If you spent most of 2017 with ongoing dental issues, you’re probably pretty motivated to make sure you’re heading into the new year with a healthy smile that you can keep as maintained as possible to avoid any repeat issues.

Taking care of your teeth today will preserve them for tomorrow.

Sound easier said than done? We’re here to help make it happen!

Why Oral Health Matters

We all have a tendency of taking our teeth for granted because they’re always there for us, but keeping your pearly whites in top shape does more for your overall health than you might think. Giving your grin a little extra attention this new year will help you in other areas of your health too including:

Your Overall Health

Keeping gum disease at bay could also lower your risks of developing other connected health problems like heart disease, diabetes, stroke, respiratory disease, Alzheimer’s and even some cancers.

Staying Confident

Having a damaged smile can really affect a person’s self esteem. Missing, stained or crooked teeth damaged by tooth decay can lead someone to feel self conscious about their smile and can have a big impact on other areas of your life like your appearance, personality, and relationships.

Looking Your Age (or younger!)

Dental damage can cause someone to look much older than they actually are. Missing teeth in certain areas can cause your cheeks to have a sunken look and wrinkles appear more prominent in one’s appearance where they otherwise wouldn’t.

Keeping Your Money In Your Bank Account

Even with dental insurance, your teeth can be a big financial drain on your bank account if you’re prone to dental decay. Take the time to properly care for your teeth at home to help reduce decay and other issues your dentist may find at your next check-up.


Dental Anxiety is a very common issue people face and it may even be keeping you from getting your teeth properly cleaned in fear that the dentist may find a few issues.

Improving Healthy Habits

There isn’t just one thing you can do to keep cavities and gum disease at bay – it’s going to take a little work! Making your oral health a daily priority will keep your smile in great shape, and the good news is, it’s only going to take a few minutes each day.

Give Your Dentist A Chance

To spot issues and spot them early that is. By scheduling your exams every 6 months, you give us a chance to catch a small issue before it grows to a dangerous size or begins to cause you pain. Routine check-ups will keep your smile in superb shape.

Listen To What Your Teeth May Be Telling You

Experiencing a little tooth pain every now and then could be perfectly normal as your tooth pain may be stemming from another source like a sinus infection or a head cold. If your tooth pain persists for more than a day or two, or you’re experiencing any of these symptoms it’s time to check in with us:

  • Lingering tooth pain for more than a day or two
  • Pressure below your teeth in your jawbone
  • Bleeding, tender or puffy gums
  • Flat surfaces on your teeth
  • Jawbone being sore or tired-feeling

Stop Dieting and Make A Healthy Lifestyle Change Instead

If a food is not good for your body, it’s probably also not great for your teeth. Stick with foods that are low in sugar and high in nutrients to keep your smile and your body happy and incorporate these surprising anti-cavity options:

  • Black Coffee – If you’re a daily coffee drinker, try skipping the added milk, cream or sugar and embrace black coffee which may have antibacterial effects due to the high caffeine content.

  • Water – It may seem like drinking plenty of water is the answer to avoiding many health problems and that’s because…it is! Your teeth are just one of the many beneficiaries from staying hydrated because of the way water helps to wash away harmful bacteria and acids.

  • Chewing The Right Gum – Chewing sugar-free gums that contain xylitol can act as a plaque-fighting weapon in your mouth. Xylitol helps to encourage saliva production which is your body’s own natural defense against cavities and it also kills cavity-causing bacteria.

Cavity-Fighting Allies for an Extra Boost

If dental check-ups have you feeling fed up with the discovery of cavities at each appointment, and you already feel like you’re doing everything you can at home to give your teeth the best oral care you can, it may be time to boost your enamel’s defense.

Ask us about how introducing CariFree into your oral hygiene routine can help give you greater control of your mouth at your next check-up!

Dr. Kim Dr. Kim

Dr. Kim Okamura

I'm Dr. Kim Okamura and this blog is a product of my love of dentistry. I dedicate it to all the patients I have served so that they may better understand my craft. The information here will give you and others the power to maintain and protect one of your most priceless gifts ... your SMILE.