Of course, the best thing to do—both for the health of your teeth and gums, and to present your brightest smile and freshest breath—is to brush your teeth after every meal. But at one time or another, we all find ourselves in situations where we’ve had something to eat or drink and we don’t have an opportunity to brush our teeth immediately afterward. Sometimes, even your Overland Park family dentist has to hang out with friends, meet with coworkers, or even interact with strangers when we know that our breath reeks of garlic prawns, or that there might be a little bit of parsley stuck between our teeth.
So what do you do when you don’t have a toothbrush on hand? Probably the number one suggestion you’ll hear is to chew some sugarless gum. That will help freshen your breath, and can also help dislodge any bits of food that might still be stuck in your teeth. (Look for gum with the American Dental Association seal of approval!)
Rinsing your mouth with water is also a great step, and don’t be afraid to really swish it around in there to get the worst of the gunk out! For particularly intractable bits of food, grab a toothpick, or, better yet, try carrying flossers in your purse or wallet. These little disposable floss strips—which often have toothpick-like handles—are great for dislodging annoying food particles in a hurry, and you can take care of it with a quick duck into the restroom.
If you spend a lot of time on the road or at the office, you can help to head off these kinds of situations by keeping a spare toothbrush, toothpaste, and other oral care essentials on hand. Keep a few supplies in the glove box of your car or in a desk drawer at work, and you can brush your teeth even when you’re on the go!
But even your Overland Park dentist knows that brushing isn’t always an option, at least not right away. So if all else fails, find a restroom and give your teeth a good look in the mirror. It may not be as bad as you thought. And if you can’t do anything else about your breath, maybe you can borrow a breath mint from a coworker. Even if you do ultimately have to face a work meeting or a face-to-face chat with bad breath, just apologize to whomever you’re meeting and explain the situation. We’ve all been there. After all, garlic prawns are really delicious.
Ultimately, brushing after you eat—and at least twice a day—is the best thing to do for your overall dental health, but it’s equally important to make regular visits to your Overland Park dentist. So the next time you find yourself picking up a toothbrush, use it as a reminder to also pick up the phone and schedule an appointment with Watts Family Dental by calling (913) 338-3384!