Published on January 25, 2024

Ways to Improve Your Oral Health

Healthy teeth and gums contribute not just to a beautiful smile but also to better digestion and prevention of various health issues. Good oral health is key to overall well-being, and in places like Excelsior, Minnesota, where community and health are highly valued, it’s especially important. 

Excelsior, a charming small town nestled on the shores of Lake Minnetonka, is known for its vibrant community life and focus on healthy living. Residents here, just like in any other part of the world, face common dental issues such as cavities, gum disease, and misalignment. These problems can affect your ability to enjoy the town’s famous lakeside eateries and social gatherings. This article aims to provide residents of Excelsior and beyond with practical and effective ways to enhance oral health. 

Whether you’re strolling down Water Street or enjoying a boat ride on the lake, these tips will ensure your oral health contributes positively to your overall quality of life.

1. Exploring Orthodontic Options

Orthodontic treatments have come a long way, with Invisalign being a prime example of modern dental innovation. If you are seeking Invisalign treatment in Excelsior, MN, we suggest consulting with experienced professionals like those at Lake Minnetonka Orthodontics. Their expertise in this modern orthodontic solution ensures you receive personalized care tailored to your specific dental needs. 

This treatment involves wearing clear, custom-fitted aligners that gradually move teeth into their proper position. Beyond cosmetic improvement, correcting misaligned teeth is crucial for oral health, as it can prevent problems like uneven wear of teeth, difficulty in cleaning, and strain on jaw muscles. 

2. Regular Dental Check-ups 

Regular visits to the dentist are fundamental for maintaining oral health. These check-ups go beyond just cleaning; dentists examine your mouth for any signs of cavities, gum disease, or other dental issues that might not be immediately noticeable. Early detection and treatment of such problems can prevent more serious and costly issues down the line. Additionally, dental professionals can provide personalized advice on how to better care for your teeth based on your specific needs.

3. Effective Brushing Techniques 

Effective brushing is more than just a routine; it’s a cornerstone of oral health. The key is to use the right technique. Brush your teeth twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Don’t forget to brush the outer, inner, and chewing surfaces of your teeth. Also, remember to brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath. This comprehensive approach to brushing helps prevent plaque build-up, cavities, and gum disease.

4. The Role of Flossing 

Flossing is an essential part of oral hygiene that often gets neglected. It removes food particles and plaque from between your teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach. Daily flossing helps prevent gum disease and cavities in these hard-to-reach areas. To floss effectively, use about 18 inches of floss, winding most of it around one of your middle fingers and the rest around the same finger of the opposite hand. Gently slide the floss up and down between your teeth, curving it around each tooth at the gum line.

5. Choosing the Right Toothbrush 

The toothbrush you use plays a significant role in your oral hygiene. A soft-bristled toothbrush is usually recommended as it is gentle on the gums and effective in removing plaque. Toothbrushes should be replaced every three to four months or sooner if the bristles become frayed. Electric toothbrushes can be a great option as well, as they can be more effective in removing plaque and are easier to use for people with limited manual dexterity.

6. The Importance of Toothpaste Selection 

Choosing the right toothpaste is crucial for oral health. A fluoride toothpaste is generally recommended because fluoride helps strengthen tooth enamel and prevent decay. If you have specific dental issues, like sensitive teeth or gum disease, consider toothpaste formulated for these conditions. Reading labels and understanding the ingredients can help you make an informed choice. Also, it’s a good idea to ask your dentist for recommendations based on your individual oral health needs.

7. Healthy Diet for Healthy Teeth 

Your diet plays a significant role in your oral health. Consuming sugary and acidic foods and beverages can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. To maintain healthy teeth and gums, incorporate a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Foods high in calcium, like dairy products or leafy greens, help strengthen teeth. Crunchy fruits and vegetables, such as apples and carrots, can help clean your teeth naturally. Additionally, drinking plenty of water, especially after meals, can help wash away food particles and reduce the risk of cavities.

8. Avoiding Harmful Habits 

Certain habits can negatively impact your oral health. Smoking and the use of tobacco products are among the most harmful, leading to gum disease, tooth decay, and even oral cancer. Limiting alcohol consumption is also important, as excessive drinking can dry out your mouth and lead to oral health issues. Additionally, avoid habits like biting nails, chewing ice, or using your teeth to open packages, as these can cause tooth damage. Breaking these habits can be challenging, but it’s crucial for maintaining strong and healthy teeth and gums.

9. Understanding the Importance of Mouthwash 

Incorporating mouthwash into your oral hygiene routine can provide additional benefits. Mouthwash can reach areas that your toothbrush and floss might miss, helping to reduce plaque and prevent gingivitis. It also helps to freshen breath and can deliver therapeutic ingredients like fluoride or antiseptics. 

However, mouthwash is not a substitute for brushing and flossing; it should be used in conjunction with these practices. Choose a mouthwash that suits your needs – whether it’s for fresh breath, dry mouth, or gingivitis prevention – and use it as directed.

10. Managing Dental Emergencies 

Knowing how to handle dental emergencies can save your teeth in critical situations. Common emergencies include knocked-out teeth, broken teeth, and severe toothaches. In case of a knocked-out tooth, try to place it back in the socket or keep it moist in milk and seek immediate dental care. 


Improving and maintaining oral health is a multifaceted endeavor that extends beyond regular brushing and flossing. It involves making informed choices about dental products, maintaining a tooth-friendly diet, avoiding harmful habits, and understanding the role of additional oral care practices like using mouthwash. 

Handling dental emergencies properly is also crucial. By integrating these practices into your daily life, you can ensure better oral health and a more confident smile. Remember, good oral health is a significant component of overall well-being, and taking care of your mouth is an investment in your general health.

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