Excellent oral health means more than a white smile. It means regular dental check-ups and preventive care as well.
· The first bristle toothbrush was invented in China in 1498, where coarse boar hairs were attached to handles made of bamboo or bone. Boar bristles were used until 1938, when nylon bristles were introduced by the company Dupont de Nemours. The first nylon toothbrush was called Doctor West's Miracle Toothbrush.
· Egyptians are believed to have started using a paste to clean their teeth around 5000 BC, before toothbrushes were invented. Ancient Greeks and Romans are known to have used toothpastes, and people in China and India first used toothpaste around 500 BC.
· In 1879, Dr. Lawrence created Listerine – a mouthwash used for cleaning mouths and sterilizing surgical wounds. By 1895, Listerine was sold to Lambert Pharmaceutical Co. and dentists began to observe the cleaning power of the mouthwash.
Maintaining good oral hygiene helps to prevent dental problems such as tooth decay, gum disease and dental erosion.
Here are some oral hygiene tips that will help keep your teeth in clean and free from tooth decay, gum disease and dental erosion.
While it may seem strange at first to brush your tongue, doing so actually reduces the bacteria in your mouth and helps your breath stay fresh. All you need to do is push the bristles on the tongue and scrape gently forward.
When you have finished brushing, try to spit out the toothpaste and don’t rinse with water. Leaving some toothpaste on your teeth is a really great way to give your teeth some extra ongoing protection.
Electric or Manual toothbrush
Both electric and manual toothbrushes are effective at cleaning teeth if you use proper technique and brush long enough. Overall, an electric toothbrush may make brushing easier, resulting in better plaque removal. Talk to the dentist if you have questions about which toothbrush might be best for you.
Flossing removes plaque and food particles in places where a toothbrush can't easily reach — under the gumline and between your teeth. Flossing daily is recommended.
Types of floss
Each type of floss has pros and cons. Here are a few points to keep in mind about your flossing options:
· Unwaxed floss is thin nylon floss made of about 35 strands twisted together. It fits into tight spaces if your teeth are close together, but it can be prone to shredding or breaking.
· Waxed floss is a standard nylon floss with a light wax coating. It is less likely to break, but the wax coating may make it harder to use in tight spots.
· Dental tape is broader and flatter than standard floss and comes in waxed or unwaxed versions. People with more space between their teeth often find dental tape more comfortable to use than standard floss.
· Polytetrafluorethylene floss (PTFE) is the same material used in high-tech Gore-Tex fabric. The material slides between the teeth easily and is less likely to shred compared to standard floss.
· Super flosses are made from yarn-like material that has stiffer sections on each end that can be used to clean around braces or dental bridges.
· Reduce or eliminate the amount of sugary food and fizzy drinks you eat and drink.
· It converts to acid in the mouth and can dissolve the tooth structure, causing decay and cavities.
· Acidic foods and drinks can also cause tooth erosion which causes tooth sensitivity.
· Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet
· Limit acidic drinks, such as soft drinks, sports drinks, cordials, wine and fruit juices
· Eat food that promote saliva production like carrots and celery
Visit the dentist for 6 monthly check ups and cleans to keep your mouth decay free and gums plaque free