As we grow older, our teeth go through various changes where we obtain two sets of teeth – milk and adult teeth. Our teeth, gums and oral hygiene need to be maintained to stay healthy as we age. So, if you’re looking to find out about how our teeth age and how to keep your perfect smile clean, white and healthy, read on!
How Do My Teeth Age?
At 5-8 months, this is the point where the first milk tooth appears and are usually the incisors which are flat edged shaped teeth situated at the front of the mouth. During this time, you should expect all 8 to start coming through up to 16 months. Four canines appear after this by the time babies reach 16-23 months and then finally the last eight teeth, which are called premolars and should have grown by the time a child turns two years old or just after.
By the time a child reaches 13 years old, the milk teeth are usually replaced by adult teeth which are much larger than milk teeth as the jaw has grown enough to make room. By the time a child reaches their teenage years, they will have 28 permanent teeth. Eventually the wisdom teeth will grow through, during late teenage years to your twenties. This varies from person to person, where some may get them but some may not at all. If there isn’t enough space to accommodate wisdom teeth, this can cause overcrowding. Therefore, they may need to be removed by your dentist. However, it may be necessary to have teeth straightened, as they may grow at different angles. Speak to your orthodontist regarding the best treatment to perfect your smile.
To maintain your permanent adult teeth, it is important to practice good oral hygiene, which means brushing and flossing regularly as well as maintaining a healthy diet and attending regular dental check ups and teeth cleanings. If you encounter any serious issues with teeth and gum health, this may result in tooth removal and dental implants or dentures. It is especially important to take care of your teeth and gums as you reach 50+ years of age. This is because gums are likely to recede which puts you at risk of gum disease. If you do happen to lose any teeth, crowns, dentures and dental implants can be treated by your dentist.
How Do I Keep My Teeth Looking Young?
Keep Your Teeth Clean
The first step in making sure you maintain your smile is to brush your teeth twice a day! Although, brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste before your first meal is ideal. If you brush after eating cereal or drinking juice, this results in sugars and acids entering the enamel on your teeth. Therefore, brushing first and rinsing your mouth after you’ve eaten would be best in keeping your teeth looking fresh. The rule of brushing your teeth before bedtime still goes though, where it is recommended to remove germs and plaque build up. Brushing teeth in circular motions as well as your tongue is needed to remove plaque build up in this area too.
Also, check what toothbrush is best for your teeth, there is not any real difference between manual and automatic if you use them properly, but electric can be more effective when removing plaque. The small heads can reach awkward areas and are easy to use with the automatic rotating head. If you are unsure of which is best for you, ask your dentist for a recommendation! Avoid rinsing after you brush your teeth too, as this will remove the fluoride which protects your teeth. Using mouthwash throughout the day can help too, as it helps to remove plaque and acid around the areas that may be difficult to reach when brushing.
Maintain a Healthy Diet and Habits
If you want to keep your teeth looking young, it is important to take into account what you’re eating and drinking. Smoking regularly can also have an impact on dental hygiene. Foods that are good for your dental health include:
- Whole Grains
- Vegetables (eating fresh fruit and vegetables are even better for the fibre!)
- Lean Protein
- Chewing gum (increases saliva flow and helps to prevent tooth decay)
It is also recommended to include foods which contain fluoride in your diet:
- Black Tea
- Powdered Cereals
Avoiding food and drinks with sugar and starchy foods as much as possible, which contain carbohydrates is especially important. Drinking plenty of water and keeping hydrated helps too, especially after every meal as it helps to remove acidity from food and drink.
Regular Check-Ups at the Dentist
Go for regular checkups with your dentist, at least twice a year to maintain oral hygiene and keep your teeth looking healthy. This can help avoid issues with your teeth and gums by having them checked and cleaned. Your dentist will be able to detect problems a lot more easily as well as offer any necessary advice and treatment.
They will usually undertake a scale and polish, to completely remove plaque and tartar from your teeth. This usually helps with discolouration and stains too. If you are also looking to have a straighter smile, invisalign treatment is recommended as it is least noticeable and can be taken out for brushing and eating! Contact your dentist today for a consultation.
Keep Your Teeth Younger for Longer with St Helier
So there you have it, all the information you need on how to keep your teeth in great condition. If you are suffering from any issues with your oral hygiene or need a checkup, book a dental hygiene appointment with us today!