Now that Halloween has passed and you’re left with more candy than you can handle, it is important to brush up on that smile – pun intended. Having good oral hygiene can have positive effects on your overall health and well-being. Read on to learn about improving your oral health!

One way to improve your oral health is by having a well-balanced diet. Eating fruits such as apples and pears can strengthen your teeth and gums while also fighting off the bacteria that cause plaque and bad breath. On the other hand, stay away from refined sugary snacks and drinks that can lead to cavities and tooth decay. A diet high in fresh fruit and low in refined sugars also reduces your risk of obesity and other chronic health conditions.

Scientists have also found a connection between mouth and body. Good oral health can improve your self-esteem, lower your risk of heart disease, prevent memory loss, and reduce the risk of infection and inflammation in the body.

Did You Know

  • Bacteria in the form of plaque can cause cavities and gingivitis.
  • The average person should brush 6 minutes a day – 2 minutes after each meal.
  • Flossing once a day for 2 to 3 minutes a day removes plaque between teeth where a toothbrush can’t reach.

Tips for Oral Health

  1. Use fluoride toothpaste with a soft-bristle toothbrush, and don’t forget to replace it every three months
  2. Spend at least two minutes using a recommended technique, which includes 30 seconds brushing each section of your mouth (upper right, upper left, lower right and lower left), both morning and night.
  3. How you hold the toothbrush depends on which part of the tooth you’re brushing. Do you know the recommended techniques for brushing each side of the tooth?

Sources: OralB, Harvard University, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, National Institutes of Health, LifeWork Strategies EAP, and Adventist HealthCare. The Health Tip of the Week is for educational purposes only. For medical advice, consult your physician. Feel free to copy and distribute this health resource.