Patients who take the time to diligently care for their smiles at home are less likely than those that don’t to suffer from all kinds of restorative and aesthetic dental issues. Our Cheney dentists help our patients optimize their oral hygiene routines so that they can achieve and maintain healthy smiles. Keep reading to learn more about caring for your smile at home.
As you probably already know, the American Dental Association recommends that patients brush their teeth twice a day. The most effective way to do this is to brush in the morning and before bed. Here are some things to keep in mind:
· Talk to your dentist about what type of bristle strength your toothbrush should have—medium and firm bristles can actually be too abrasive for some patients, and lead to unintentional gum tissue damage.
· Most adult dental patients should be using a toothpaste that includes fluoride, since fluoride helps to re-mineralize dental enamel. Young patients, who are prone to swallowing toothpaste, should not use toothpastes with fluoride (as this can lead to your child developing dental fluorosis). Your dentist can help you determine when your child can make the switch.
· Remember that gentle, sustained pressure is more effective and safer than brushing aggressively. You want to move your toothbrush in small circular motions, while making sure not to press too hard. You want to brush your smile for at least 2 minutes every time you brush.
The other cornerstone of your at-home oral hygiene routine is flossing. The best time to floss is at night right before you brush your teeth; this allows you to dislodge dental debris and bacteria before you brush it away. When you floss, make sure that you’re moving systematically through your smile, cleaning between all of your teeth. When you begin, cut one long strip of floss, and then move to a new section of this strip as you go from tooth to tooth.
Certain patients with existing oral health issues may need to adopt slightly different at-home oral hygiene plans; your dentist can help you make any necessary alterations. Please feel free to call our Cheney dentists to learn more and to schedule personal consultation!