As your dentist office you know that we are fully committed to your dental care. We do not want you to neglect your dental hygiene needs at home. For our patients who want to know how to take care of their teeth between office visits, here are a few guidelines to ensure that your teeth and gums stay clean and healthy.
Dentists do not just tell you that flossing is important in order to make your life more difficult. Flossing makes sure that your teeth are fully clean. Proper daily flossing can prevent both cavities and gum disease.
Establish good dental hygiene habits. Floss once a day, whenever it is most convenient for you. Once you start flossing every day, it will become as automatic as brushing your teeth. If you are unsure how to properly floss your teeth, Dr. Gilbert or one of our dental hygienists can advise you on the proper technique. Water flossing has reemerged as an excellent method to clean between the teeth. Studies have shown that when used properly, daily water flossing is as effective as regular flossing.
II. Teeth Brushing
Daily brushing is one of the most important things you can do for your teeth. Ideally, you should thoroughly brush your teeth after each meal and snack. At the very least you should brush twice daily in the morning and at bedtime for at least 2 minutes each time.
Using a soft bristled brush and toothpaste, carefully clean each side of the tooth using circular motions. You should be able to remove all of the food particles from your teeth without brushing too vigorously. Brushing your teeth too hard or with a tough-bristled toothbrush can irritate and even damage your gums as well as cause enamel erosion.
Although we encourage you to brush your teeth after each meal, we understand that sometimes this is not possible. If you are away from home and do not have a toothbrush on hand, a simple rinse with water can remove some of the larger food particles from your teeth. Rinsing your teeth is not as effective as brushing, of course, but it can help prevent cavities by removing particles that would otherwise cling to your teeth all day.
If you are prone to decay or periodontal disease, rinsing with a fluoride rinse at bedtime is suggested.