4 tips for healthy teeth and happy smiles this autumn

The holidays have come to an end, the kids are back in school and sadly, the summer is all but over. It’s easy to feel sadness and even a certain sense of nostalgia as the end of September approaches, but with these four tips for keeping your teeth in the best possible condition, there’s still plenty to smile about even if the weather is less than desirable.

1. Brush up on your oral hygiene

During the summer holiday season, most families tend relax their routines and go with the flow. Many of us let children get away with things they wouldn’t normally be able to, such as staying up late or playing computer games long after they ought to be asleep. As we focus our efforts on keeping the peace and having a break from playing the role of enforcer, it’s all too easy to let teeth brushing become one of the things that gets overlooked. 

With the children preparing to return to school and the daily routine returning to a more structured state, now is the perfect time to make sure that both you and your family are brushing your teeth correctly. It is advised that adults and children alike brush twice a day for at least two minutes, using a fluoride toothpaste. You can also improve your oral hygiene by adding floss or interdental brushes to tackle areas that a normal toothbrush simply cannot access.

2. Get snack sensible

The chances are that as well as letting your kids have a bit more freedom from routine over the last six weeks than they do for most of the year, they’ve also had a little taste of food freedom… 

Let’s face it, snacks tend to be a simple way of keeping people happy.

As you and your family begin to get back into a more structured routine, now is a great time to start being snack sensible. Be aware that what may appear to be good choices are not always what they seem. Many purportedly healthy cereal bars often contain as much as 30% sugar. Another risk with cereal or biscuit bars is that they tend to leave a lot of residue on and around the teeth, which can increase the risk of acid attack. The same is also true of starchy foods such as crisps or bread. You may not realise, but savoury foods such as these can sometimes be just as bad as sweet snacks, as they create a perfect harbour for bacteria.

A great alternative that will benefit your teeth and gums – as well as your waistline – is raw vegetables such as celery and carrots. These actually function as a natural toothbrush, helping to clean the surface of your teeth with a delicate abrasive effect. Cheese is another great food that is not only nutritious, but also helps to reduce acidity.

3. Drink right

No matter what the weather, drinking plenty of water is great for your health – and pure water is also a great drink as far as your teeth are concerned, especially when drinking between meals. If you or your children are not fans of pure water, try to opt for low sugar or ideally sugar free drinks and avoid high sugar, carbonated drinks such as cola and energy drinks, which can have devastating consequences for teeth.

If you are planning to make sport or fitness a priority this autumn, be conscious of what sports drinks you use too, as many of these can contain extremely high levels of sugar. If consumed regularly, these drinks can substantially increase your risk of tooth decay.

4. Book a dental check-up

According to a recent research, people aged 34 and under are now more likely to visit a dentist for teeth whitening or other cosmetic treatments than for a routine check up. Whilst it is positive that people are taking a keener interest in their teeth than ever before, it is also potentially a ticking time bomb. Regular dental examinations are, for your teeth, what solid foundations are for a house. If you miss your routine checkup, damage or gum disease may go unnoticed, allowing it to develop into a much more serious problem requiring dental treatment. 

Autumn is a great time to get back into the habit of keeping regular visits with the dentist for both you and your family, to make sure that you have every reason to keep on smiling all year round.

To book an appointment now or enquire about becoming a member of our friendly and flexible family dental practice, call us today on 0161 941 2143.

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