Our pearly whites are one of the best assets that we have, both in terms of making us look as well as feel good. No matter how attractive you are, flashing a set of yellow teeth is going to take all your charm and beauty away. And besides, food won’t taste that good with half of your teeth out of commission.
But in spite of its importance we tend to overlook the care of our teeth and by the time we stand up and take notice, it is way too late. It might seem strange but teeth are actually meant to last a lifetime, but because of our uncaring attitude, the number of people using dentures are also in the rise. We tend to think that brushing twice a day and using mint and mouthwash are enough care that we take of our gums and teeth. But in reality there is much more to it than just brushing and chewing.
Teeth are miniature calcified structures, usually white or off white in color and have different purposes for different species. In humans, they are mainly used to eat and chew food and break them down for proper digestion. Humans start getting their teeth by the age of 6 months and this set of around 20 teeth are later replaced by a set of permanent teeth which are normally 32 in number. The outer layer of the teeth is mainly composed of enamel which is the hardest substance in them. The rest are made of dentin, cementum and dental pulp. All the substances that make up teeth have to be protected from getting harmed.
Our teeth come in contact with various kinds of food, numerous times in a day. When the teeth chew down food, they leave some particles which remains lodged inside the spaces between the teeth and gums. When these small particles stay and rot in hidden corners, they cause a lot of problems including plaque, bad breath and cavity.
Brushing is the most basic and most important dental care routine that one needs to religiously follow. But besides brushing twice in a day, there is another vital thing to keep in mind; which is the method of brushing. The brush should be held at a 45 degree angle to the gum line. The strokes should be back and forth and away from the gum line and should cover all regions of the teeth.
Normally a fluoride toothpaste is the best bet as it helps in maintaining the health of the teeth. But the advent of toothpaste and toothbrush is fairly new, before that our ancestors used to use twigs of different trees and plants like eucalyptus, oak, fir, neem etc. These natural brushes contain the essential oils which not only help in keeping the teeth clean, it tightens the gums and freshens the mouth as well. The natural antiseptic quality also helps to keep germs at bay. They help in removing the debris from inside the teeth, promotes better circulation in the gums etc.
Cavity, plaque and tooth decay are among a few irritants that we face at one time or another with our teeth. There are various natural ways that people from all over the world adopt and almost all of them have been universally accepted as effective. However, since these are not clinically proven, hence there are some reservations about them.
Cavity is a stage of tooth decay caused by the presence of bacteria and food particles inside our teeth. Sugar and sugary substances are a major cause of cavity and it is prudent to avoid the consumption of sugar items when cavity occurs. There are various natural means one can employ to keep cavity occurring. People in Asian countries favor using neem twigs to brush and also neem oil to rub on the gums and teeth.
They also advocate usage of turmeric and coriander for promoting good teeth. Ginger root is another good way to get rid of cavity as ginger has a lot of anti-septic and anti inflammatory properties. Green tea has also been found to be extremely beneficial for cavity riddance and prevention. Brushing after eating sweets and chocolates is an important way of avoiding cavity.
Tooth ache can happen due to many underlying problems like swollen gums, cavity, bacteria, gum sensitivity etc and the cause needs to be first identified and tackled with. To get relief from aching gums and tooth one can apply the following methods:
Garlic clove when applied against the aching area will provide instant relief. Clove oil also provides relief and helps keep infection away when applies on the gums. Pepper powder mixed with clove oil is also an effective remedy against tooth ache. Dried fig boiled with milk and applied to the painful area also helps a lot.
When applied to the affected area has also been found to be helpful. Grapefruit seed extract is another effective remedy for tooth pain. It has got a very bitter taste so only a few drops should be mixed with a glass of water.
If the cheeks become swollen due to the pain, an ice pack can help bring down the pain and swelling. Also to get rid of tooth ache one needs to get rid of the problem which has led to the pain as well. Instead of taking harmful painkillers one can definitely try employing one of these home remedies first.
Plaque is the layer of bacteria lining the teeth, gums and tongue and which can cause a lot of problems, if left unchecked. There are many effective and economical natural methods by which plaque formation on the teeth can be prevented.
Application of Vitamin C helps in removing tartar and plaque and so application of tomatoes, lime or any other citrus foods and keeping inside the mouth for sometime before rinsing with warm water and baking soda will help remove the plaque.
Orange peel when rubbed on the gums and teeth before sleeping helps to keep them healthy and germ free. The usage of alternative remedies to keep a good dental health has been found beneficial by many but it is advisable to also consult a dentist every year to find out your teeth health.