How to Keep Your Teeth Clean
Most dental problems, including gum disease, cavities, dry mouth, and bad breath, among others can be successfully prevented through a combination of proper home dental care and regular dental checkups. At-home oral hygiene practices such as maintaining a healthy diet, rinsing your mouth with clean water after meals, regularly flossing, brushing your teeth twice a day can help prevent the buildup of plaque that lead to the various dental problems.
Furthermore, since studies show that dental problems such as gum disease contribute to more serious health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and low birth weight, proper dental care at home can positively influence your entire systemic health.
Routine exam & cleaning
An oral examination is the best way for your dentist to assess the health of your teeth, gums, and mouth. A routine checkup typically involves an oral examination and professional teeth cleaning, both of which form a vital part of your dental health and overall wellbeing. Studies show that gum disease is connected to a number of serious health conditions, including stroke, heart disease, premature birth, and some types of arthritis. Poor oral health can also affect your memory and cognitive skills.
Dental prophylaxis, or professional dental cleanings, require a dental professional to use special instruments to remove plaque and calculus on the surface of your teeth and below the gum line. This effectively removes harmful bacteria in your mouth that are responsible for gum inflammation, which is an indicator of periodontal disease. If not removed, the bacteria buildup leads to bad breath, stained teeth, bleeding gums, loose teeth, and general poor health.
How to take care of your mouth at home
Dr. Ross Shelden recommends that you dedicate at least two minutes to properly brush your teeth, and do it twice a day. Choose a soft-bristle toothbrush and use fluoridated toothpaste to clean all surfaces of your teeth, the gumline, and your tongue. Use proper brushing technique, which involves moving the toothbrush head in short, circular strokes across the front and back teeth and gums to remove any food particles and plaque on all surfaces and between two adjacent teeth. Clean the gums gently to reduce bacteria buildup, improve blood circulation, and prevent gum disease. Also remember to clean the tongue as it can be a common cause of bad breath.
Many people only remember to floss their teeth occasionally, like when they have some pieces of meat or other food particles stuck between their teeth. However, Dr. Shelden recommends that you floss once a day to remove food particles, bacteria, and plaque from between your teeth, where the bristles of your toothbrush cannot reach easily. Proper technique is also important here. You should use both hands, with the dental floss tied around your index fingers, and then slide the floss up and down between all your teeth, making sure to reach the gums.
Preventive dental care through regular dental exams and cleaning, as well as proper at-home care can reduce the discomfort and cost associated with major dental work. Keeping a regular dental routine will also help you maintain your white, dazzling smile for great confidence at all times. Visit us today for your annual checkup and dental cleaning.