*Professional teeth cleaning
In addition to practicing good oral hygiene at home, you should be seen for a professional dental cleaning twice a year. Regular professional care is important for stopping the progression of gingivitis and periodontal disease because a toothbrush alone cannot remove tartar (tartar can only be removed by a dental hygienist using special tools).
Taking care of your teeth
The most important thing you can do to protect your teeth and gums is to practice good hygiene habits at home. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss once for optimal health. There are other tools, discussed below, that may also enhance your oral health.
Benefits of Professional teeth cleaning
Fluoride for health
Fluoride is a natural substance and is critically important to our health. Consuming acidic beverages and foods damages the enamel of the teeth, allowing bacteria to invade. Fluoride protects against this process by making teeth more resistant to acid. Fluoride can also reverse early decay. This is why it’s important to use toothpaste with fluoride added to it.
The importance of flossing
Flossing is just as important as brushing, as it removes plaque from between the teeth and also stimulates the gums to help with periodontal health. The best way to floss is by using an 18” piece of waxed floss lightly wrapped around each middle finger and worked between teeth, carefully sweeping in between teeth and massaging the gums.
Oral hygiene: tools for home
There are many dental products available “over the counter.” Here are a few that we recommend:
- Electronic Toothbrushes: These are very effective at removing plaque and debris from the teeth. They are safe for most people
- Oral Irrigators: This is a good addition to your oral hygiene routine, but shouldn’t be used as a substitute for flossing.
- Rubber tips: The rubber tip can be used to very gently massage the gums by following the gum line.
- Mouthwash: This can be used to freshen the mouth and as an additional source of fluoride. It should not be used by children under 6 years old.
About sensitive teeth
Occasionally, you may experience tooth sensitivity. In patients with good oral hygiene habits, this usually resolves on its own. However, if you have tooth sensitivity that doesn’t get better after a few days, please call us – we can recommend treatment or medicated toothpaste to help ease discomfort.