Going to college is a big transition filled with new experiences. Unfortunately, college life can also be hard on your teeth. College habits like late-night snacking, cafeteria free-for-alls at the dessert bar, and sugary beverages all contribute to increased dental problems.
So how do you prevent cavities and stay on top of oral health while in school? One of the most important things you can do for your oral health is to schedule regular trips to the dentist’s office. Regular cleanings coupled with at-home care and healthy eating practices will ensure your teeth stay healthy throughout college and beyond.
Schedule Regular Trips to the Dentist’s Office
If you’re used to mom or dad scheduling visits to the dentist for you, then it may come as a shock how far in advance you need to schedule your appointment. It’s common for dental practices to schedule routine cleanings six months to a year in advance. This means it’s not realistic to wait until the week before winter break to book a cleaning. You need to plan ahead!
Our biggest tip when it comes to visiting the dentist regularly is to schedule your cleanings in advance. Look ahead at the academic calendar and pick dates when you know you’ll be home from school to schedule your routine visit to the dentist.
If you’re not sure what your schedule looks like, or are planning on traveling during breaks, try to visit the dentist before the school year starts. This way, you can start the year with a clean bill of health and don’t need to worry about seeing the dentist on campus.
Take Advantage of On-Campus Resources
Many large colleges and universities offer dentistry resources on campus for current students. From free routine cleanings to cavity treatments and beyond, check with your college health center to see what type of care they offer. Visiting on-campus dental practices is a quick and easy way to stay on top of preventative care without too much hassle.
Recognize When it’s an Emergency
Even though preventative care is highly effective when it comes to keeping cavities and other complications at bay, sometimes you need medical assistance immediately. If you’re experiencing excessive bleeding, intense pain or swelling, or have cracked or chipped a tooth, you need to seek emergency dental care as soon as possible. Don’t wait for your routine check-up to address these issues.
Preventative Care at Home
Daily routines influence long-term health in all aspects of life. This goes for your body and your teeth. Healthy teeth indicate a healthy lifestyle! One of the most impactful things you can do to take charge of your oral health is to engage in healthy eating habits and develop an effective dental hygiene routine.
Practice Healthy Eating Habits – College is often viewed as a time of freedom from parental restrictions where students experience autonomy over their choices for the first time. But as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility. Drinking sodas at every meal or frequenting the soft-serve machine may seem like harmless indulgences, but the damage this kind of behavior causes your teeth may be long-lasting.
Instead of getting all your calories from cereals, chips, and other carb-heavy foods, try opting for a fresher, more satiating alternative. Salads, nuts, fruits, whole grain bread products, and lean meats are all excellent choices to keep your body and your mouth in good health.
Don’t get us wrong, it’s okay to indulge every now and then, but remember that nutrition is a marathon and not a sprint. It’s all about developing healthy and sustainable habits that last a lifetime.
Create a Sustainable Preventative Care Routine – At-home care begins with actions as simple as brushing your teeth. With hectic college schedules, it’s common for students to let their dental routines fall by the wayside. Try to commit to brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once a day. Once you establish a solid routine, it’s easier to stick to your rhythm.
If you have trouble remembering to brush your teeth, we recommend setting alarms on your phone to remind you that it’s brushin’ time! Hopefully over time your daily care will become second-nature.
Take Care of Your Teeth with Treasured Smiles Adult and Cosmetic Dentistry
At Treasured Smiles Adult and Cosmetic Dentistry we strive to provide top-notch care to all our patients in a stress-free environment. Whether you’re a new patient or a returning client, we want to make sure your experience is as comfortable as possible. This means that we work closely with our patients to ensure they understand our comprehensive range of treatment options, preventative care techniques, and how to schedule future visits to the dentist.
Treasured Smiles Adult and Cosmetic Dentistry is here to help your teeth look and feel great. Stop by and meet our team by scheduling an appointment today!