With spring in the air and winter behind us, now is the time to take on spring cleaning tasks. Whether you’re deep cleaning the kitchen or replacing your linens, the start of this season offers a clean slate.
While we often associate spring cleaning with duties around the house, it’s also a great time to revamp your oral care routine. Establishing a consistent dental hygiene routine is crucial for maintaining a healthy smile and avoiding problems like tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. Dr. Paul Caputo and staff here in Palm Harbor encourage patients to take a critical look at their oral care habits to start this sunny season on a good note.
Don’t just limit your spring cleaning list to household chores! Now is the best time to spruce up your oral care — which includes hygiene practices and tools. Is it time to throw out your old toothbrush or electric toothbrush head? This is just one of many steps you can take to reinvigorate your dental care routine. Other tricks to upgrade your oral care regimen include:
The start of spring is the perfect time to either replenish or upgrade your dental care products. This is a great opportunity to either change out your toothbrush or restock on floss and mouthwash. If you need to improve your oral care routine, it may be time to upgrade the dental care products you use.
Instead of using a manual toothbrush, try upgrading to an electric toothbrush. An electric toothbrush is an excellent option for patients that have a hard time mastering the appropriate level of pressure and motion needed to remove plaque without harming the tooth enamel. Opting for a water flosser instead of string floss may also be a great option for some patients. A water flosser is great for patients with issues with dexterity or those with extremely sensitive gums.
Most patients know that it’s best to avoid storing a toothbrush in a sealed case. This type of closed environment allows the toothbrush to remain wet and creates a breeding ground for bacteria to flourish. Instead of using a case, an upright toothbrush holder is the most popular way to properly store a toothbrush.
Unfortunately, these holders can also harbor germs, toothpaste residue, and soap scum. Be sure to rinse and sterilized your toothbrush holder as a part of your spring cleaning tasks.
Did you know that mouthwash has a limited shelf life? Some patients can overlook the importance of checking the expiration date on mouthwash, but it is extremely important to do so. Using an expired mouthwash can be ineffective at actually killing bacteria in the mouth. Be sure to check the date indicated on the bottle at the start of the season.
Snacking on chips, cookies, or candy isn’t just a bad idea for its poor nutritional value; these snacks can also wreak havoc on the health of your teeth and gums. When you consume sugary foods and beverages, bacteria in your mouth will metabolize the sugars and create an acidic substance that wears away at the tooth enamel.
While it’s virtually impossible to consume something that won’t alter the pH of the mouth, patients should opt for nutrient-dense snacks that can also boost dental health. Strawberries are a great sweet seasonal fruit that contains plenty of vitamins and minerals. For example, strawberries are rich in vitamin C, which is great for preventing bleeding gums and oral cancer.
Practicing a proper oral hygiene routine each day is just one piece of the puzzle. To truly keep your oral health in tip-top shape, you will need the help of a dental professional. That is why it’s necessary for patients to visit the dentist every six months for a routine cleaning and checkup. During these bi-annual appointments, your dentist will look for early signs of dental problems and a hygienist will perform a routine cleaning to remove any tartar buildup.
If you haven’t seen the dentist this year, we strongly encourage you to start this spring on a fresh note with a healthy smile.
Are you due for a dental appointment? Don’t wait any longer to address your oral health concerns. Dr. Paul Caputo and his caring staff are dedicated to giving you a healthy, beautiful smile. To learn more about the dental services offered, contact our office in Palm Harbor to schedule your no-obligation consultation with Dr. Caputo.
Paul L. Caputo, DDS3490 E Lake Rd S Suite A