Your teeth help you smile confidently for pictures, enjoy delicious food at your favorite restaurant, and communicate with your loved ones – so you can see why taking care of them is so important! Unfortunately, all it takes is one rogue baseball, one wrong bite on your fork, or one crunch into an unpopped popcorn kernel for your once healthy teeth to sustain a chip, crack, or fracture. To help prevent that from happening, here are five must-know tips for preventing a dental emergency.
#1. Prioritize a Solid At-Home Oral Hygiene Regimen
One of the best ways to prevent dental problems, like tooth-damaging decay, is by following a solid oral hygiene routine at home. This includes brushing for two full minutes at least twice a day, flossing daily, and rinsing with mouthwash regularly. These best practices will remove plaque, food particles, and bacteria, leaving your teeth clean, healthy, and strong.
#2. Replace Your Toothbrush Every Quarter
Do you remember the last time you changed your toothbrush? If the answer is “no,” then now is the time to do it! You should be replacing your toothbrush (or the bristles, if you have an electric one) every quarter. This will ensure bacteria isn’t being continually reintroduced to your mouth, significantly hindering the effectiveness of your dental care regimen.
#3. Limit Your Sugar Consumption
Sugar may be delicious, but it turns into cavity-causing acid when it interacts with the bacteria in your mouth. Since this leaves your teeth particularly vulnerable to damage, it’s best to practice moderation. When you do indulge, make sure to drink plenty of water and complete your oral hygiene routine shortly after.
#4. Visit Your Dentist Every Six Months
Biannual visits to the dentist are important for a few reasons. In addition to giving your teeth a thorough cleaning, the checkup portion ensures dental problems, like cavities, are caught in the early stages. That way, your tooth is restored swiftly, significantly reducing your chances of experiencing a dental emergency. If you do experience any abnormal symptoms, like oral pain, between visits, don’t put off getting in touch with your dental team.
#5. Wear a Protective Mouthguard/Nightguard
Sports-related incidents and nighttime teeth-grinding both can result in extensive tooth-related injuries. Therefore, it’s best to take a proactive approach and ask your dentist about getting a custom mouthguard or nightguard made. These oral appliances will effectively protect your teeth from damage throughout the years, preventing countless dental emergencies.
Handling a dental emergency isn’t how anyone wants to spend their day. Luckily, the above tips will reduce your risk of experiencing one!
About the Author
For about a decade now, Dr. Sheri McIntosh has spent her days providing patients in the Fort Worth area with conservative, quality, patient-focused care. She is proud to offer both early morning, afternoon, and lunchtime appointments to ensure patients struggling with any kind of dental injury have the highest likelihood of being treated the same day. If you’re interested in learning more about preventing dental emergencies or are struggling with one of your own, visit her website or call (817) 337-8300.