Your teeth are designed to last a lifetime. Unfortunately, however, various factors can shorten their lifespan. Decay or trauma might endanger your teeth and lead to the need for extractions. How can you protect your pearly whites and help them to endure for decades to come? Since May is National Save Your Tooth Month, now is the perfect time for you to think about how you can protect your precious, natural smile. Here are some useful tips from your dentist in Midtown East:
Practice Diligent At-Home Oral Hygiene
Oftentimes, severe tooth decay is a direct result of missteps in at-home oral hygiene. To protect your teeth from the harmful bacteria that lead to cavities, you should brush twice a day and floss once a day. Take care to be thorough; always brush the backs of your teeth and the area along the gum line. When you floss, be sure to clean both sides of every tooth, including the back side of your back molars.
Take Safety Precautions
Some individuals lose their teeth due to an unfortunate accident that injures their mouth. For example, they may suffer a severe blow during a sports game, or they might trip and hit their mouth on a hard surface. To minimize the risk that such an incident will rob you of one or more of your teeth, it is important that you always wear a mouthguard during sports. You should also make it a habit to be aware of your surroundings so you can take proper precautions around trip hazards.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
You should visit your dentist at least once every six months for a checkup and cleaning. The checkups allow your dentist to catch any oral health problems and treat them before they lead to the need for extractions. The professional cleanings remove tartar from your teeth, and they give your hygienist an opportunity to share personalized advice on how you can improve your at-home oral care routine.
Toothache? Seek Help Right Away
If you ever experience a toothache, do not ignore it. The pain could be a sign that serious decay has reached the interior layers of your tooth. Left untreated, the bacteria in your tooth’s pulp could lead to a dangerous and even life-threatening infection. Delays in treatment will also decrease the chances that the tooth can be saved.
When you visit your dentist because of a toothache, they’ll diagnose the problem and recommend the restorative procedure that they believe is best for your circumstances. Oftentimes, the best way to save a severely decayed or damaged tooth is via root canal therapy. During root canal therapy, your dentist will clean out the damaged portion of the tooth, remove the tooth’s nerve, and then fill in the tooth with a special material.
Your teeth are precious! Use the above tips to keep your natural smile intact for as long as possible.
About Drs. Boyd
We are a family-operated, multi-generational dental practice conveniently located in Manhattan’s Midtown East. We offer a broad range of services that are focused on helping patients retain their natural teeth for a lifetime, including both preventive and restorative care. To learn more about us and how we can benefit your smile, contact our team today at 212-755-9055.