Caring for your teeth can be tricky and time-consuming – and when we have a problem with our teeth, it can really stick out like a sore thumb (or tooth). Here are a few of the more common problems people encounter, from bad breath and sore gums, and a few tricks for keeping on top of your dental hygiene. If you have any questions, or your problems persist, come visit Switch, your Lower Hutt Dentist, and we’ll see you right.

Chewing gum…

Chewing gum helps to protect your teeth by increasing the saliva in your mouth. Chew after a meal for the best protection.

Try not to use your teeth as…

Try not to use your teeth as pliers, ice crushers, packaging openers or knot looseners. There’s a reason blenders have a special blade to crush ice ;)

It’s true! Flossing…

It’s true! Flossing (as well as brushing!) every day is the best way to cut down on pain in your teeth (and pain in your pocket!).

Bad breath?

Brushing twice a day, flossing and doing everything by the book but you’ve still got dragon’s breath? Could have something to do with your diet. Smoking and alcohol certainly don’t help but we don’t want to have to completely change your lifestyle. Garlic, onions, spices and durian or even hidden gum disease are famous for giving dragon’s breath as well. Tongue cleaning, mouthwash and chewing gum can help.

Sugar isn’t always the problem…

The amount of sugar isn’t always the problem when it comes to cavities – more about how often. The bacteria in your mouth feed on the sugar. The acid these little guys excrete attacks the enamel on your teeth which can lead to cavities. The saliva in your mouth has goodies in it which can repair teeth – this happens very slowly – over a few hours. So having breaks inbetween eating sugar will allow your teeth to repair itself. The best trick is to eat sugar around mealtimes and give your teeth a rest inbetween.

And don’t forget…

Not to brush too hard. The plaque you are trying to get rid of around your teeth is soft and so are your gums. Always use a soft toothbrush – think of it more like a massage rather than a scrub.