The year 2020 was the craziest, chaotic and melancholic, but it did teach us the value of health and family. In my seven years of dental practice in two different states within various hospitals and clinics, I have often seen patients suffering physically and financially due to ignorance and neglect. Thankfully the Corona scare has shifted our attention towards maintaining hygiene, eating right, exercising, and staying fit.
However, dental care and oral hygiene are still the most ignored aspects of health. It does not matter whether you are a homemaker or a working professional, in your 60s or in your teens, people of all ages and professions should pay more attention to dental care as teeth are very much necessary to eat, talk and smile confidently. Due to the pandemic, routine dental visits are being discouraged by doctors. So I have put down few pointers for your dental health.
- Brush twice a day with a toothbrush and a fluoridated toothpaste for about 2-3 minutes with proper brushing technique and always clean your tongue.
- Rinse with mouthwash after a meal for 2 minutes and then spit out. Don't eat, drink anything or rinse for the next 30 minutes.
- Early morning presence of blood in saliva or bleeding during brushing or foul smelling breath (Halitosis) or salty taste in the mouth may indicate bad gums and poor oral hygiene. Visit your dentist for professional intervention.
- Dental diseases are progressive in nature, unless treated they don't really stop. So periodic dental visits are recommended for early intervention and prevention of diseases.
- The dental cavity is the most common dental issue, but if you can keep your mouth clean and avoid simple sugars (refined sugars) it can be prevented to a certain extent.
- Diabetic, hypertensive, epileptic and cardiac patients should be extra careful about oral health because they are more predisposed to oral diseases. Never neglect.
- Before planning your pregnancy make sure to visit a dentist because a dental emergency is difficult and trickier to manage during pregnancy.
- Tobacco usage causes oral cancer. In India, 5 deaths happen every hour due to oral cancer. Tobacco usage also increases diabetes, stroke, heart and lung related complications.
- Tobacco usage makes you more susceptible to Covid 19 complications.
- Do not apply a hot pack for toothache, it will lead to the formation of pus and the infection can spread to your brain or windpipe, causing a life-threatening emergency.
- Do not self-treat for teeth sensitivity with a desensitizing toothpaste. Finding the reason is more important than getting the fix, so visit a dentist as most of the time the cause can be eliminated.
- Oral ulcers that do not heal within a week need an expert opinion because if left untreated they may turn into cancer. Recurrent ulcers can be due to a sharp tooth or some systemic illness.
- Teeth cleaning should start from the day the first tooth appears in a kid. Use wet gauze to clean mouth before that.
- Medicines alone won't heal your dental problems, the majority of times you may need a dental procedure.
So do take care of your teeth and continue to spread smiles. Let me know your thoughts and comments in the comment section.