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How to Have a Great Smile at 40

If you want to look younger longer, and maintain a healthy smile, then taking care of your dental health is key! Check out these tips for keeping your teeth looking bright and white longer.

Brush and floss daily

For optimal dental health, you should be brushing your teeth 3 times a day, and flossing at least before you go to bed. Make sure to brush your teeth for two minutes every time. When you brush, make sure that the brush is tilted towards your gums, since gum health will help your teeth stay healthy longer.

If you want to get the best brushing possible, use an electric toothbrush. This will help you get more motion than you would with your usual, manual toothbrush. You can find a low-cost electric toothbrush from Oral-B or something similar for $5 or less at your local supermarket.

When you floss, using waxed floss is best, so that it doesn't cut into your gums. Make sure to floss well along the gumline, so that your gums will stay healthy too.

Use Fluoride Mouthwash

If you use a mouthwash with too much alcohol, it can be abrasive in your mouth. Using Fluoride mouthwash, on the other hand, can have many benefits for both your teeth and gums.

According to Albany Dental Health Fluoride mouthwash can:

  • Reduce the formation of cavities

  • Slow the growth of cavities

  • Delay or eliminate the need for expensive dental work

  • By preventing cavities and slowing the growth of bacteria, a fluoride mouth rinse also help to:

  • Prevent gum disease - gingivitis and periodontitis.

  • Reduce tooth pain.

  • Prevent the early loss of teeth.

With all of the benefits, it is great to use this type of mouthwash every time that you brush your teeth. This can keep your teeth cleaner and healthier than brushing alone can.

Avoid foods that are too chewy or crunchy

If you eat something that is bad for your teeth, the consequences can be lasting. For example, I broke two of my teeth eating corn nuts, and had to have extensive dental work done to repair the broken teeth. I had to have two crowns and a root canal to fix the broken teeth. Repairs like this can also be expensive.

  • Sticky candies and sweets. If you eat sweets, go for those that clear out of your mouth quickly. So thumbs down for lollipops and caramels that have refined sugar. The ADA states that chocolate washes off the teeth more quickly than other candies. Dark chocolate (70% cacao) does have some health benefits. Some studies have shown chocolate is not as bad as other sugary treats.

  • Starchy foods that can get stuck in your mouth. Soft breads and potato chips, for instance, can get trapped between your teeth.

  • Carbonated soft drinks. These drinks are the leading source of added sugar among kids and teens. They are loaded with sugar. And most soft drinks have phosphoric and citric acids that wear away tooth enamel.

  • Substances that dry out your mouth. These include alcohol and many medicines. If medicines are the cause, talk with your dental care provider about getting a fluoride rinse, or a fluoride gel for brushing your teeth.

Remember, all things in moderation. Although I would steer completely clear of things like corn nuts and jawbreakers, you can probably eat some of the others if you aren't eating them too frequently, and you remember to brush right afterwards.

It may seem like a sacrifice in the short term, but in the long term, your beautiful smile will thank you!

Get regular dental care

Everyone knows that it's important to go to the dentist, but sometimes we forget or put it off. While it may seem difficult to get time off of work to go to the dentist, it is well worth it to do so. Otherwise, you may have to take time off later for more intense procedures. When it is just a cleaning, you should be back to work in an hour or two.

Typically, you should be going to the dentist for your cleaning and x-rays every 6 months. This way, you can get a through professional cleaning that will leave your teeth bright and shining longer. It keeps plaque from building up in your mouth, and allows the dentist to spot any problem areas early.

You may need some minor fillings, but you should be able to avoid most tooth decay and gum disease this way. The dentist will also be able to tell you if your brushing and flossing is being done correctly, so that you can avoid any errors in this department.

Laser gum cleaning

When you go to the dentist, in addition to your regular dental cleaning, you can get laser gum treatments. This can help to target any gum disease early, and keep your teeth especially clean.

Laser periodontal treatment is a procedure in which a very strong, but tiny laser is used to remove inflamed tissue. Lasers are capable of distinguishing between healthy and diseased tissue because the diseased tissue is generally darker. Therefore, the laser can easily eliminate infected gums with a high level of precision. It also helps to sterilize the area, which can prevent future gum disease or infection. After the laser is applied to the infected gums, healthy gum tissue can regenerate in many cases, which ultimately improves gum stability and prevents tooth loss.

New procedures like laser gum cleaning can keep your teeth clean and healthy longer. It is a non-invasive procedure that can be done during your regular office visit. When I go to the dentist, I have a laser gum cleaning at every visit, since I have been prone to gum disease over the years.

If you have any soreness or redness in your gums, I would highly recommend asking your dentist about laser gum cleaning. It leaves your teeth feeling so much cleaner than usual, and can help to reduce the plaque build up in your mouth.


Taking proper care of your teeth now can help you to avoid painful and costly procedures in the future. This way, you won't need to get crowns or dental implants, and you will be able to keep your own teeth longer.

Having beautiful, white teeth will help you stay looking beautiful for years into the future. This way, you can have beautiful teeth when you turn 40, and beyond! These are all tips I have used in my own life, and it has kept my teeth healthy and clean all these years.

For tips on dental care for your kids, check out:


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