Most of us pay little attention to our oral health. But the truth is just like all the other parts of your body, your mouth too could fall prey to bacterial attacks and much more! That is why the ‘World Oral Health Day’ is observed every year on 20th March to urge you to take better care of your mouth.
Before we go tell you how to improve your oral hygiene, we want to share a few fun facts about the mouth you probably didn’t know!
12 fascinating facts about your mouth
- Without your saliva, you wouldn’t be able to taste anything.
- Saliva also prevents cavities and tooth decay.
- Your teeth begin to develop while you are still in the womb.
- The only muscle in your body that does not need to be propped up by your skeleton is your tongue.
- Children only have 20 teeth!
- 1/3rd of your teeth are tucked away beneath your gums.
- You have 10,000 taste buds that are replaced every 10-14 days.
- No two people have the same dentures! They are as unique as your fingerprints.
- When you smile, you strengthen your immunity. How? Smiling triggers the production of antibodies.
- Do you know which is the hardest substance in your body? It’s not your bones. It’s the enamel of your teeth!
- Your teeth are alive. They are linked to a network of blood vessels and nerves.
- Right-handed people favour the right side of their mouths for doing most of the chewing whereas left-handed people chew mostly with the left side.
Easy ways to improve oral hygiene
Do you know what might happen unless you take proper care of your mouth? Anything from cavities, tooth decay, gum diseases, disorders of the salivary glands to heart diseases and cancers of the head and neck! But you can avoid all that just by maintaining proper oral hygiene. And it’s easy! Let us tell you how you can care for your mouth.
1. Brush twice a day
Many people miss brushing before going to bed. But what about all the food particles and harmful bacteria that have made their way into your mouth during the course of the day? You need to expel them with a second round of brushing before you turn in for the night.
However, do not brush right after your dinner! Your meals release acids that make your enamel fragile. Wait 20 minutes before you brush or you could erode the enamel.
Do not forget to clean your tongue. Food can accumulate in between your taste buds too.
Do you think brushing alone suffices? No! Brushing only covers 60% of the surface area of your teeth. For comprehensive cleaning, you need to floss. Flossing can remove those food particles that are lodged in the remotest corners of your teeth.
3. Your teeth need fluoride
Fluoride toothpaste has faced flak. Many ‘natural’ variants of toothpaste have surfaced claiming to be a healthier substitute. But it is a fact that no other substance is known to us that can prevent cavities. It also strengthens your enamel.
Finish off your brushing and flossing routine by rinsing your mouth with a medicated mouthwash that has the property to neutralize harmful bacteria and acids.
A few basic oral hygiene tips –
- Limit your consumption of sugary foods. They trigger acid production in the mouth that attracts bad bacteria.
- Visit a dentist once every year.
- Drink plenty of water. Water washes down remnants of food to keep your mouth clean.
This World Oral Health Day, make oral health a priority! With a few simple steps, you can ensure that your teeth, gums and tongue remain healthy for a long time and you can show off your beautiful smile!