If you’re like many patients, you have probably heard that you should be brushing your teeth twice and flossing once daily. These are great basics, but to really keep your teeth healthy, you might want to try these tips to make your professional cleaning last longer between visits!
Use an electric toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes are generally more effective than standard toothbrushes when used correctly. Rather than using the motion of your hand and arm to brush your teeth, an electric toothbrush uses tiny, very rapid vibrations to clean your teeth for you. Electric toothbrushes are also more effective in removing plaque and calcium buildup, and many include a timer to make sure you brush for the proper length of time.
If you have been told that you brush too hard, try using a WaterPik. The WaterPik uses water to clean your teeth and gumline so that there is no need for an abrasive brush to clean your teeth. The WaterPik is also great for reluctant flossers because a stream of water acts much like floss to reach hidden areas between teeth very effectively.
Become a master flosser. Flossing every day is perhaps the most important component of a good dental health routine. While toothbrushes can only reach approximately 60% of your tooth surfaces, flossing effectively removes plaque and debris from the remaining 40%. Correct flossing technique is vital to experience the most benefits. Use a C-shape when flossing and be sure to slide the floss under the gums. Be careful not to floss too aggressively or you may damage your gums. Feel free to ask your dental hygienist to teach you the best way to floss.
Rinse after flossing. Flossing daily is one way to keep your mouth healthy, but make sure you get the most out of flossing by rinsing thoroughly afterward. Even if you floss without brushing after a meal, be sure to rinse your mouth to remove any debris or bacteria you have loosened. Rinsing with a fluoride rinse can maximize the benefits of flossing and help to protect and repair your teeth.
Keep a toothbrush handy. It has happened to us all – you go out to lunch and return to work with spinach in your teeth and a case of garlic breath. Not only could your breath offend that particular client, but it can also cause damage to your teeth and gums. Keep a toothbrush in your office desk and in your purse to remove particles of food in an emergency.
Take care of your tongue. Your tongue can be home to millions of bacteria that contribute to bad breath and plaque buildup. Brush your tongue very gently once daily to remove bacteria. Mouthwash is also an effective way to prevent bacterial growth in the mouth and freshen your breath. Use a mouthwash that includes fluoride to strengthen your teeth and make your whole mouth healthier.
Include these habits in your daily dental hygiene routine for a healthier mouth and prevent dental problems to make your visits to our office easier and more enjoyable. If you have any questions about what type of products to use or how to use them, contact us at Downtown Dental or ask your hygienist and we’ll be happy to help!