One of the biggest negative impacts of a meth addiction is dental decay and gum disease. But, that isn’t the only way that people can set themselves up for a host of dental issues. Gum disease and tooth decay remain problems for all people. Being in a meth abuse treatment facility is a start however; there are some very simple things you can do to set yourself up for oral health success.
Parents should start practicing dental care as soon as their child’s first tooth appears. This is usually around six months old. Many parents fail to do so and thereforeone out of every four kids has signs of tooth decay before they start school. When taking care of a child’s first teeth, it’s enough to wipe them with a damp, clean cloth or soft brush. When they are about two, you can introduce a toothbrush, but closely supervise them as they learn to brush.
People get their permanent molars around age six. This is a great time to have sealants applied. These thin protective coatings are put on the chewing surfaces of back teeth to cut down on decay in the uneven surfaces. Sealants significantly decrease the number of cavities and the breakdown of the teeth. However, very few children receive them.
Fluoride has been the largest advance that oral healthcare has ever seen. It strengthens enamel, which makes teeth less likely to decay. Some people get all the fluoride that they need from fluoridated water, but those who live in areas that do not fluoridate the water may need to talk to a dentist about getting some. Your dentist may suggest a fluoride application. You also have the option of the many toothpastes and mouthwashes on the market that contain fluoride.
For young children, fluoride should be used in small doses. If they are given too much, they may develop white spots on their teeth.
Practice Good Dental Care at Home
The basic advice is to brush twice per day and floss each day. But, you should also change your toothbrush out 3-4 times per year. If you need a special toothbrush to accommodate braces or because of arthritis, speak to a dentist. They can help you find what you need.
Be Vigilant After Meals
You don’t need to spend all day brushing. Instead, be sure to use an antibacterial rinse after you finish eating to help with gum issues and tooth decay. Alternately, have some sugar-free gum, which increases the flow of saliva to rinse away bacteria and neutralize acid.
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