There's no shortcut to oral health. Setting aside a few minutes at both ends of our day to brush and floss your teeth is the only way to maintain your smile. "There are dental implants to be sure, but you're not going to get a chance at another set of teeth," says Richard H. Price, a spokesperson for the American Dental Association. "This is it."
Over time, our dental education tends to fade from memory (what is fluoride again?) so it's important to remind yourself how critical caring for your mouth is and how painful oral issues can be. Here are 10 ways to keep your teeth healthy so that you can keep them as long as possible.
Don't Skimp on Flossing
Research indicates that anywhere from 30 to 80 percent of Americans don’t floss. Whatever the number is, it’s too high. “It's like the bumper sticker used to say: You don’t have to floss all your teeth, just the ones you want to save,” says Price. That doesn't mean flossing is more important than brushing, though. Both are strongly encouraged because they achieve different things. But try not to go nuts: Brushing too often—we’re talking six or seven times a day—can actually hurt your teeth. Stick to morning, noon, and night.
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