Love Your Mouth Challenge

As a child growing up, brushing my teeth twice a day was ultra important, a ritual my parents made me do to keep my teeth healthy and clean. For 5 years in my early teenage years I had braces to make my teeth look smarter and I am so so pleased I did, I love my teeth. I feel a persons nice smile and clean teeth really does say something positive about a person.

Everything my parents drilled into me as a child is now being passed onto my children to ensure they take care of their teeth.

Because my oral health has always been important to me I would like to challenge you all to a simple Love Your Mouth Challenge. Here you will answer only a couple of questions and at the end you will be recommended a small range of products to help improve your oral health.

Please also feel free to read the below press release.

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A new study has revealed that thousands of people could be putting their oral health at risk by not brushing their teeth in the evening because they are too tired.

Why Love Your Mouth?

  • A new survey commissioned by GSK, as part of its Love Your Mouth campaign (LoveYourMouth.co.uk) has revealed that thousands of people could be putting their oral health at risk by not brushing their teeth in the evening because they are too tired.
  • The survey found that 45% of people questioned say they have gone to bed without brushing their teeth, which could increase their chances of cavities, gum disease and even tooth loss.
  • The survey also found that even though 91%of survey respondents say they are aware that poor oral care can lead to a decline in the health of teeth and gums, almost 1 in 5 people surveyed brush their teeth with just water and without using toothpaste!
  • Based on these new findings, it’s unsurprising that 67%1 of respondents said they have experienced tooth decay or cavities and 29%1 of those people confessed they have six or more fillings.

The survey of 10,000 UK adults, commissioned by GSK, as part of its Love Your Mouth campaign (LoveYourMouth.co.uk), found that 45% of people questioned say they have gone to bed without brushing their teeth, which could increase their chances of cavities, gum disease and even tooth loss.

When asked why they don’t stick to a daily oral healthcare regime, 40%1 of respondents blamed being too tired, 30%1 said it’s because they’re lazy and 28%1 admitted they forget to brush or floss.

Natty Burgess, a London Dental Practitioner comments: “People think that missing one brush won’t be a problem, but over time a lack of good hygiene can cause a whole host of unwanted oral health conditions. Not brushing at least twice a day can cause the build-up of plaque and calculus (hardened plaque), as well as tooth decay which can lead to sensitivity and cavities that require fillings. In a 24 hour period, we are awake for around 17 hours, equivalent to 1,020 minutes. You only need to spend around four minutes brushing, and a couple of extra minutes per day flossing to avoid having problems.”

Natty Burgess’ top tips for maintaining happy and healthy teeth:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time.

The ideal times to brush your teeth are before bedtime and at least once more during the day (first thing in the morning is recommended). If you choose to brush after a meal or drink, wait around 40 minutes before your brush as this helps to avoid rubbing off the enamel which is softened after consuming acidic foods and drinks.

  • Use a suitable toothpaste

Most people are never taught how to brush or floss properly (if at all), and aren’t aware that you need to use an appropriate toothpaste.

  • Use floss or other interdental cleaning aids.

Ask your dentist to advise you on the right aid and size for your mouth. Your toothbrush will not reach areas where the teeth contact each other, so if you don’t use interdental cleaning products, you’re not completely cleaning your mouth and this can lead to decay, inflammation of gums and many other issues. It is in the gaps between your teeth where you mainly trap food when you eat. Regular flossing especially at night is imperative in maintaining a happy and healthy mouth.

  • Use mouthwash, at least once a day at a different time from brushing, eg after lunch.

Mouthwash helps protect your mouth between brushing by maintaining lower levels of bacteria. Importantly though, mouthwash only compliments brushing and flossing but does not replace either. Mouthwash helps rinse out food particles from your mouth and helps deter bad breath as it is designed to leave your mouth with a fresh (normally minty) smell. For best results, no food or drink should be consumed for 30 minutes after it is used. Sploosh well, spit and don’t rinse.

  • Spit, don’t rinse.  Leaving toothpaste in your mouth helps protect your teeth.

Fluoride is a mineral which helps to strengthen tooth enamel, helps increase resistance to tooth decay and can also reduce the amount of acid produced by bacteria in your mouth. Therefore try not to rinse your mouth out with water after brushing as you’ll wash away all the fluoride.”

  • Use disclosing tablets to see how well you are cleaning your teeth.

They will temporarily stain any plaque so you can see what areas you’re missing.

  • Use a small headed toothbrush with soft, rounded bristles and a comfortable easy grip handle.

The approach should be to slowly and carefully follow a routine ensuring that they cover all areas, making sure no food remains in the mouth, and that no tooth has been missed.

  • Prevention is key

Ask your dentist to teach you how to maintain a routine with correct oral hygiene procedures suitable for your individual needs as this is the key to long term success. Historically, people have grown up watching their parents put a toothbrush in their mouth and simply brushing around, assuming it is quick and that’s all that is needed.  I regularly encourage my patients to go back to the basics and start with easy instructions on how to use a toothbrush and floss properly.

  • Make brushing part of your bedtime routine

It can help if you connect the routine of brushing to the last thing you do before sleeping. If you like to take a relaxing bath or shower before bed, connect brushing your teeth with this relaxing part of your routine. To make sure you don’t forget to brush, it’s a good idea to set at least two daily reminder alarms on your mobile.

  • Visit your dentist for regular professional cleaning and check-ups

If you notice any unexpected changes in your gums or teeth (such as bleeding, redness or sensitivity), or feel something just isn’t right in your mouth (perhaps a lump, sharp edge on a tooth or other pain), book an appointment as soon as possible before the problem becomes bigger and painful.  Small issues will regularly get sorted out easily and relatively cheaply by a dentist.  The longer you leave a problem, the more time, effort and cost it will take to deal with, and you may suffer unnecessarily and for no good reason in the meantime.

[1] Love Your Mouth survey of 10,000 UK adults by OnePoll in May 2015

 

**This is not a sponsored post, I received a small amount of goodies (including toothpaste and brush) for sharing this press release.

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