As a Southampton dentist we’re here to help our patients achieve a healthy looking smile which not only makes a person appear younger than their years but is also an indication that they’re in good overall health too.
We all tend to think of dull teeth being associated with old age, and it’s true that the enamel coating on teeth does darken over time.
One quick tip for those of a certain age is to cut back on habits such as smoking and drinking red wine and coffee to reduce staining on their teeth. However, even if you’re a model dental patient, there’s more to keeping a pretty, healthy smile than oral care. Here are 3 simple habits you may want to look at starting today:
1. Eat an apple a day
Not only does this habit keep the doctor away but according to Southampton cosmetic dentist, Dr Thomas Darling, it’s good for your teeth too. Crunchy foods such as celery, apples, and carrots help to scrub away stubborn stains the more you eat them, similar to your toothbrush. You may even visibly notice the cleansing effect, especially if you are a coffee drinker who wasn’t previously eating an apple every day. If you start to eat an apple between meals and don’t brush your teeth afterwards, then be sure to drink a glass of water to remove any acid, sugar, and plaque that it may have dislodged from your tooth enamel.
2. Boost calcium intake
Just as calcium is good for your bones so it’s good for your teeth too. According to a study carried out by The Dairy Council, a person who consumes 800mg a day has less chance of developing severe gum disease. The reason for this is that 99% of the calcium found in your body is contained in the bones and teeth. Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yoghurt help to strengthen the jaw bone or alveolar, which helps to keep the teeth in place. It’s recommended that men and women under the age of 50 consume 1000 mg a day and those older than 51, should aim for 1200 mg a day. As an example, a small glass of milk, one yoghurt, or small piece of cheese, yields around 300mg each. If you struggle with eating dairy products, then you could take a calcium supplement instead.
3. Only eat carbs at mealtimes
Even carbs which aren’t especially sweet such as a whole wheat roll or a packet of crisps can be practically as damaging to your teeth (and your waistline) as a slice of chocolate cake, if you don’t take care. The reason for this is that all carbs break down into simple sugar which bacteria in the mouth turns into plaque, which is the main cause of gum disease and cavities. Carbohydrate based foods such as bread, crisps, and crackers, tend to be chewy with a texture that easily gets trapped in between teeth or below the gum line where bacteria can accumulate. The tip here is to limit your carbs to mealtimes rather than having them as a snack. When you eat a larger meal, the mouth produces more saliva which is the body’s way of washing away particles of food.
Get into the habits listed above and you can help keep protect your teeth between six monthly check-ups. If you’re looking for a dentist in Southampton, then why not contact Smilemakers. We’re here to help or advice you on anything to do with your oral care. Give us a call on 02380 442626 or check out our web site at www.smilemakers.co.uk where you’ll find a wealth of information on the treatment we provide and more besides.