You may or may not know that last week was World Oral Health Day (Sun 20th March), and you may also know that I take my oral health very seriously!
There are a few things I do everyday that I will absolutely not compromise on in order to keep my teeth, gums and oral health in general ship shape and shiny!
Here are the five things I do everyday to look after my oral health.
Brushing Twice a Day
This is a rule that’s been instilled in me my whole life, and even when I’m super tired, have had too many wines, or am camping in a field at a festival – I will be brushing my teeth before bed, and first thing in the morning!
Brushing twice a day is one of the most important things you can do. It cleans your mouth before you swallow any food or drink, and washes away any food, sugar, or unwanted bacteria from your mouth before going to bed for hours.
Using a Water Flosser
Flossing isn’t something I’m very good at doing. I don’t like using floss, my gums get sore and irritated, my teeth are close together so sometimes it’s actually quite hard to get the floss to move freely between my teeth and the whole experience is something I’d rather miss. That was, until I go a water flosser!
I now love flossing! The water flosser is so much quicker, easier and kinder to my mouth, and it not only helps floss between my teeth, but I use it to remove plaque and stains from my actual teeth too.
I love scraping my tongue. It’s the first thing I do in the morning before oil pulling and once you start, you really can’t stop. Seeing what comes off your tongue is quite something, and the thought of not doing it is actually scary to me now! You can grab a tongue scraper from Boots, the supermarket or Amazon and it is well worth the money!
I have talked about oil pulling about 500 times now, but I will continue to, whenever I can! You take a spoon of coconut oil every morning before drinking or eating, and you swirl it around like mouthwash for any time between 5 and 20 minutes. I do this for overall health and to remove toxins from my body, but also to keep my oral health as good as it can be. Oil pulling draws out impurities, cleans and nourishes. My teeth are whiter, my gums are healthier and with less toxins sticking around my body, my immune system is boosted and supported – what a win!
Chewing Sugar Free Gum
Having a pack of sugar free gum to hand is a must for me. There’s nothing worse than feeling like you need to brush your teeth when you’re out and about, and if I’ve just had a coffee with friends, I like to be able to freshen my breath.
Surprisingly, there are so many benefits to chewing sugar free gum. The Faculty of Dentistry at King’s College London is currently analysing the role of sugar-free chewing gum on plaque quantity in the oral cavity. Findings show that “chewing SFG reduces caries increment in comparison to non-chewing”, i.e. it reduces the incidence of cavities. An earlier 2019 study by King’s found that people who chew SFG develop 28% fewer cavities than those who do not. The equivalent percentage for using fluoride toothpastes and supplements was 24%.
Not only is chewing gum good for your teeth, it also has mental health benefits and can help with conditions such as anxiety. This is something I know very well, and find that in situations that cause me a lot of anxiety, like flying, chewing gum can help give my body something else to focus on, especially if I’m feeling physically anxious and shaky! It’s also a great option for those of us who just don’t have the time or facilities to go to the dentist.