So how does one make sure they’re doing at least the basics of good dental care in their daily lives? Well here’s a handy check list that will help you as you make the effort to ensure you’re at least doing those basics. They’re really not difficult or overwhelming and if you do them to the best of your ability (yes, everyone slips once in a while), you’ll see a great improvement in your oral health:
- Brush your teeth twice a day-in the morning and before bed-and floss once a day. This removes plaque, which can lead to damaged teeth, gums, and surrounding bone.
- Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps prevent tooth decay and cavities. Ask your dentist if you need a mouthwash that contains fluoride or one with ingredients that fight plaque. Look for toothpastes that have been approved by the American Dental Association.
- Avoid foods that contain a lot of sugar. Sugar helps plaque grow.
- Avoid using tobacco products, which can cause gum disease and oral cancer. Exposure to tobacco smoke (secondhand smoke) also may cause gum disease as well as other health problems.
- Practice tongue cleaning. You can use a tongue cleaner or a soft-bristle toothbrush, stroking in a back-to-front direction. Tongue cleaning is particularly important for people who smoke or whose tongues are coated or deeply grooved.
- Schedule regular trips to the dentist based on how often you need exams and cleaning.
If you follow these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to good oral health. If you have any questions about anything on the list, please call us and we’ll be glad to discuss it with you and answer your questions.