Americans eat a lot of food. In fact, on average, Americans eat about a ton of food each year. That is an incredible amount of consumption, but how often are Americans rinsing after each meal or snack? Our guess is not often enough.
Rinsing, even with just water, is a major part of keeping your teeth white, healthy, and clear of food and sugar particles. According to Sharon Libich, our dental hygienist at Shadow Creek Ranch Dental Specialists in Pearland, everyone should rinse their mouth with water after eating anything. But it doesn’t just stop at food, she even recommends rinsing after chewing gum.
Why Rinse Your Mouth So Often?
“There are certain gums that are better than others,” Libich says. “Some of the bacteria have adapted to the sugars in our diet, so they are going to utilize that to squirt acid on the teeth and gums. That increases the risk of gingivitis, periodontitis, and gum disease.”
Saliva does help remove food particles in the mouth, but we eat so many things so often – as made obvious with the ton we eat – that food can get stuck in hard to reach places, like between the gums and cheeks. Food that remains in the mouth for too long can create cavities and even periodontal disease.
“Saliva helps to clear it away, but not totally,” Libich says. “So if you can, rinse your mouth with water and then brush 20 or 30 minutes later and that will help clear off those food particles.”
Other Ways to Keep Your Mouth Healthy and Clean
Our Pearland dental hygienist also suggests you try brushing first without toothpaste and then add toothpaste later in small increments. There are so many times that even our Pearland dental patients waste too much toothpaste, or use too much but do not receive the full effect from it.
“A lot of times we put the one dab of toothpaste on our toothbrush and we spit it out in the sink and it cleans the sink, but it doesn’t clean our teeth,” she adds. “If you reapply it, you get more for your efforts.”
Take these simple healthy dental steps to ensure your mouth remains as healthy as possible. Eat. Rinse. Repeat. Just try to scale down on the ton.
Need to keep your teeth even cleaner? Schedule your dental cleaning appointment with us today and let our Pearland dentists keep you on the healthy track.