Natural solutions for optimal oral health

June 23, 2015

Oral hygiene is a key part of maintaining your overall health and well-being. These tips and natural solutions can help you keep your teeth and gums in optimal shape so that you can greet every day with a smile.

Natural solutions for optimal oral health

The basics

Proper oral hygiene starts with regular care. Here are the basics for how to care for your teeth and gums naturally.

  • Brush your teeth regularly. The main cause of tooth decay is plaque, a film of bacteria that clings to the teeth and gums. Cleaning after meals will help to get rid of it and also reduce stains.
  • Floss regularly. Using a gentle back-and-forth motion, pass the floss between two teeth. At the gum line, curve the floss in a C-shape against one tooth, then scrape downward on the upper teeth and upward on the lower teeth.
  • Consider investing in an electric toothbrush. Although it costs more, over time it is more effective than a regular toothbrush in removing plaque from your teeth.

Gum health

Healthy gums play an important role in overall oral health.

  • Gargle regularly with cold black tea. The tannin in tea acts as an astringent, strengthening gums.
  • Massage your gums. Using your fingertip or a rubber gum massager (available from pharmacists), gently massage your gums in small circular movements several times a week to improve circulation and boost oral health.
  • For bleeding gums, try gargling with five millilitres (one teaspoon) of witch hazel in 50 millilitres (1/4 cup) of water. Alternatively, use 250 millilitres (one cup) of warm water with two grams (1/2 teaspoon) of salt and six drops of goldenseal tincture.

Tackling specific oral health issues

For any oral health issues, a consultation with your dentist is always the best place to start. Here are some natural treatments that may help you tackle specific issues, as long as your dentist gives you the green light.

  • Add two drops of tea tree oil to water to make a powerful antiseptic gargle (but make sure you don't swallow it). Alternatively, try gargling with salt, a general antiseptic. Salty water also soothes a sore throat.
  • To help reduce inflammation and fight plaque, stir five millilitres (one teaspoon) of aloe vera gel into warm water and gargle.
  • Treat a mouth ulcer by rinsing your mouth out with a solution of five millilitres (one teaspoon) of three percent hydrogen peroxide in 50 millilitres (1/4 cup) of water. This will disinfect your mouth, clean up bacteria and speed healing. Finally, to put a protective coating on the ulcer, dab it with vegetable glycerine.
  • Avoid the possible toxicity of mercury amalgam fillings. Next time you go to the dentist, ask for a composite filling.

A radiant smile is not only a great way to lift your spirits, but also a sign of good oral health. With regular care and natural treatments, your teeth and gums will help a healthier you shine through.

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