You wake up late. You’re not anywhere near your toothbrush. You just plain forgot to brush your teeth. Now, the bacteria in your mouth are throwing a huge limbo party in your mouth, producing acid that eats away at the enamel on your teeth.
Think there’s nothing you can do without your toothbrush in hand? Think again! There are a number of things you can do to keep fighting cavity, even when you can’t brush. You’ve heard of brushless car washes? Well, try a couple of these ideas and you’ll help turn your mouth into a brushless cavity-fighting machine!
- Limit your intake of sugary or starchy foods. Substances in starchy, sugary foods help promote the production of acid in your mouth. However, it’s not the amount that you consume, rather the duration that you expose your teeth to sugary sweets that causes issues. By cutting back on how long you spend ingesting sweets, be they sugary drinks or junk food, you can limit how long the acid has to attack your teeth.
- Drink plenty of water. Water helps to neutralize the effects of acidic and sugary foods. Fluoridated tap water also helps replace minerals lost to decay and can even help repair damage to teeth.
- Chew sugarless gum. Gum that contains xylitol helps slow bacteria growth.
- Eat plenty of crunchy vegetables and fruits. They help produce saliva, which interferes with cavity-causing microbes. It also helps to remove stuck food particles, massages your gums, and cleans between teeth.
- Snack on raisins. While raisins may be sweet and sticky, they contain antimicrobial properties can inhibit bad bacteria in your mouth.
- Use an antimicrobial rinse that has been proven to reduce plaque. Keep a small bottle in your desk, purse or briefcase so you can swish your mouth clean when you’re not at home.
It should go without saying, but even taking all these actions together shouldn’t replace brushing your teeth twice a day. But together with a healthy brushing regimen, these suggestions should help you have a mouthful of happy healthy teeth.