Most people realize that in order to keep your teeth and gums healthy, you need to brush and floss each day. In addition, it is important to go to the dentist and to eat a healthy diet. Sometimes, however, you can do everything right and still suffer from oral health issues. If you have problems with halitosis, tooth decay, receding gums, erosion or mouth sores, you may feel embarrassed or uncomfortable about your situation. The American Dental Association has advice and information that should be beneficial to you going forward.
Halitosis is also known as bad breath, and the treatment depends on why the condition is presenting itself in the first place. Obviously, proper oral hygiene is important, and you should brush and floss each day to rid your mouth of bacteria. If this is not the problem, however, you have to take things a step further.
It may be that you have a medical condition causing your bad breath. A few possibilities are diabetes, reflux, bronchitis or a respiratory infection. In addition, certain medications can dry out your mouth, which makes you more prone to halitosis. Finally, your diet could be the culprit. Try to eat fewer onions and garlic, and if you are a smoker, it is important to stop.
If you are suffering from decay or erosion, pick up a fluoride toothpaste and use that two times per day. In addition, make sure you floss and visit your dentist as often as he or she deems necessary. Your dentist may also come up with a treatment plan for you based on your situation; one option is plastic sealants that protect the teeth and cut back on the possibility of decay. Also, try to snack less and eat healthy meals in order to avoid erosion and plaque. Acidic foods should also be avoided and include things like tomatoes, citrus fruits, pickles and sports drinks. Finally, gastric acid often makes a bad situation worse, so make sure to treat any issues that you have, including acid reflux or bulimia.
Receding gums are a serious problem. Periodontal disease is also something that needs to be addressed. If you have gingivitis, your gums may be redder in color and bleed more than before. Periodontitis causes harm to the bones and gums that take care of the teeth, which means they may become loose or fall out altogether. To avoid these issues, floss once per day, brush twice per day, and head to the dentist at least two times per year. In addition, take it easy when you brush your teeth. Purchase a soft toothbrush and wear a mouth guard at night to avoid issues that crop up as a result of grinding or clenching. Finally, make sure you visit the dentist if you notice anything unusual with your bite or the alignment of your teeth.
Sores in the Mouth
There are a few different types of mouth sores, including cold sores and canker sores. Not only do these sores look unattractive, they can also hurt. Canker sores arise within the mouth whereas cold sores show up outside of the mouth, typically around the lips. These sores generally get better after about seven days or so, and there is even over the counter treatments available for the canker sores. If you have a particularly bothersome cold sore, you may want to look into a topical anesthetic. If you find that you are prone to cold sore outbreaks, ask your doctor about your options. He or she may be able to prescribe an antiviral drug to assist you and make it less likely that you suffer from cold sores in the future.