Everyday life is busy, and it's easy to let certain things fall by the wayside. Your dental care shouldn't be one of these things, ideally, but no one is perfect. If your dental care record has been less than stellar lately, you can take steps to get back on track. Here are four tips that can help you start taking better care of your teeth again:
1. Make changes gradually.
Making lots of big changes at once might feel exhilarating initially, but after the excitement wears off, you may not stick to your new resolutions. Instead, pick one thing to change at a time. If you want to eat less candy in an effort to protect your teeth, focus on that one thing before you try to make other changes too.
2. Don't let perfectionism stand in your way.
If you haven't been brushing and flossing your teeth as much as you should, the worst thing you can do is consider your teeth a lost cause. Even if you haven't flossed in weeks, the best time to start flossing is now. Remember that every little bit helps when it comes to oral care. Imperfect brushing and flossing habits are still better than none at all. You should strive to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily, but if you can't do that, just try to get as close to that frequency as you can.
3. Don't avoid the dentist.
If you haven't been to the dentist in a few years, you may be afraid of the news you'll receive. It's possible you may have developed some cavities during your lapse in care. However, you shouldn't let your fear of bad news keep you from seeking dental care now. Find the courage to make your first dentist appointment. If you do have cavities, they will only get worse the longer you wait. Getting treatment now can save you from needing to get root canal therapy, which is more expensive and invasive.
4. Find a dentist that you like.
You may want to examine the reasons you haven't been to the dentist for a long time. If it's because you didn't like your old dentist, you should avoid getting into the same situation again. Make an effort to find a dentist you like. If you have a spouse and kids, you can find a dentist for the whole family by looking for family dental care. Going to the dentist with your entire family can teach your kids good habits. It's also more convenient to schedule several family members' dentist appointments at once, since you will have to make fewer trips to the dentist's office.