Oral Health Month Celebrated in June

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), an estimated 100 million Americans don’t go to the dentist on a yearly basis. This is concerning. Regular oral care, like brushing and flossing frequently and going to the dentist at least two times per year, can prevent most severe dental conditions.

Lingering tooth pain or gum swelling can contribute to larger issues if left untreated. Beyond losing your teeth, poor dental health is associated with increased risk for conditions such as heart disease. 

You shouldn’t wait until you have symptoms to visit your dentist. Going to the dentist twice a year will usually allow them to catch a problem before you even notice any symptoms.

If you experience any of the following warning signs of dental health issues, you should make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible:

  • Ulcers, sores, or tender areas in the mouth that won’t heal after a week or two
  • Bleeding or swollen gums after brushing or flossing
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Sudden sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures or beverages
  • Pain or toothache
  • Loose teeth
  • Receding gums
  • Pain with chewing or biting
  • Swelling of the face and cheek
  • Clicking of the jaw
  • Cracked or broken teeth
  • Frequent dry mouth

 

Ways to maintain your oral health

  • Brush twice a day
  • Floss every day
  • Visit your dentist every six months
  • Never use toothpicks as they can damage the gums
  • Rinse your mouth with an antimicrobial mouth rinse that contains fluoride
  • Drink fluoridated water
  • Limit your consumption of acidic drinks like soda and citrus juice
  • Only use your teeth for chewing
  • Wear a mouthguard when you play sports
  • Never smoke or use smokeless tobacco

 

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