I was just wondering if poor oral hygiene could be as a result of my autism? There’s something about toothpaste that I just don’t like and while I make an effort to clean my teeth at least once a day it’s a struggle. And going to the dentist just sends my anxiety through the roof so I generally avoid going unless I have to.
Does any of this sound familiar? And what workarounds are there to improve my oral health?
Not that I know of, but you could use a trait of autism to your advantage. Autistic people tend to prefer routines to help manage their lives, so perhaps you would be good at creating that habit of brushing and improving oral hygiene?x
Much love <3
I have been struggling with oral hygiene and other parts of hygiene for years. I also have a dentists appointment soon. I haven't been for years and I am terrified. I might even ask about sedation as my anxiety goes through the roof. Can anyone help me with any hygiene tips?. Like when you run a bath, how much hot and cold water should you use?. Which products to use?. Should you wet the toothbrush or not and should you rinse toothpaste afterwards or not?. Which toothpaste is best and is mouthwash necessary?. What if I am not brushing right because of dexterity issues?.
Try different products and techniques until you find one that you like/can tolerate. Not everyone will like wetting their brush with warm water but that would help people whose teeth are sensitive to cold.
Not everyone likes the same type/flavour of toothpaste, so try some different ones until you find something you like. You should rinse your toothbrush afterwards of course, but whether you rinse your mouth depends on what you feel comfortable with.
Mouthwash is not essential but might improve your confidence in interacting with others. I find that if I floss, then use DentylpH, then brush, my mouth feels fresh for the whole day.
If you are afraid you're not brushing properly, then maybe an electric toothbrush is something you could try. I use the Pulsar toothbrush, but they say that rotary ones are even better. I haven't always done it the same way, but in all my life I've never had a cavity and I have all 32 teeth.
It's just a matter of having a good diet and brushing regularly. Seeing a dentist every so often helps too but if you take proper care of your teeth, your dentist won't have much to do.
Thanks for the advice. I've heard different things, that you are supposed to leave toothpaste in your mouth without rinsing afterwards, and I have heard that you should use fluoride and then heard that you shouldn't and should use organic toothpaste. I've seen one with baking soda in. The contradictions give me overloads and meltdowns. I also get confused by the different brands of toothpaste and different types, such as cavity protection toothpaste, deep clean toothpaste, toothpaste with activated charcoal, toothpaste for sensitive teeth, etc. How are you supposed to know which one to choose?. Also, does children's toothpaste work for adults?. I've heard it has less fluoride, but the flavour is more mild I have difficulty choosing other products such as bath products, cleaning products, hair products etc for the same reason.
I think that fluoride is pretty important because it keeps mouth bacteria and acid under control and allows teeth to absorb calcium from the saliva. Any toothpaste with fluoride will protect your teeth from cavities if it is used regularly.
If you don't have sensitive teeth, then you don't need to worry about getting toothpaste for sensitive teeth.
All those baking soda, activated charcoal, etc. types of toothpastes are just gimmicks (and I don't think they taste very good).
Children's toothpaste would work for adults, but due to the reduced fluoride it would provide slightly less protection from cavities. However, it might be a good option for you because of its milder flavour. If you find toothpaste tastes too strong then it's something you could try.
Choosing a toothpaste is not a life-or-death decision, so you could try a tube of one type, see if you like it, then pick another type next time if you don't. There is no such thing as the "wrong" type of toothpaste, though I would stay away from the ones without fluoride for the reasons stated above. Also, don't believe everything you hear in adverts and whatnot. They are trying to sell their product, after all.
I say pick a toothpaste with fluoride based on how it tastes. If it tastes good, you'll use it. Otherwise, they are basically all the same. If you don't believe me, look at the ingredients. The same goes for other types of products as well. I just go for the cheapest ones.
Also, I would recommend using a soft toothbrush. For some reason, they are harder to find in the UK, because people like using the one with harder bristles, but you can scrape paint off a car with a hard toothbrush so why would anyone want to use them in their mouth?