Good oral hygiene is essential for preventing cavities and gum disease. Practicing optimum oral hygiene can help to prevent plaque, tartar, and bacteria buildup and also help you maintain a beautiful, healthy, confident smile.
What is oral hygiene?
Good oral hygiene is the cornerstone of maintaining healthy teeth and gums, as well as preventing or managing many common dental problems, such as tooth decay and gum disease. Daily brushing and flossing of your teeth, along with regular checkups and cleanings at your dental office, are the best ways to keep your smile healthy and bright.
Need for preventive care
Preventive care is the best defense when it comes to your oral health. During your cleanings and checkups, your dentist will screen you for any problems affecting your smile. If problems are caught early, they can be treated more easily and with less expense than if they are allowed to get worse. Plus, routine visits will allow your dentist to monitor the health of your whole mouth to catch any problems at their earliest stages before they have a chance to become more serious and expensive to fix.
Additionally, daily dental care at home is a critical part of maintaining a healthy smile. By brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once, you can prevent plaque from building up on your teeth. Plaque that is not removed can harden into tartar, which can only be removed by your dentist during a professional cleaning. In addition to removing the bacteria that attract plaque, professional teeth cleanings also remove stains caused by food particles and tobacco.
Benefits of good oral hygiene
Good oral hygiene is as much about keeping a smile healthy as it is about preventing serious medical conditions down the road, like heart disease or diabetes. That’s because bacteria in the mouth can lead to these serious conditions if it isn’t kept under control through proper brushing and flossing and regular trips to the dentist’s office for checkups and cleanings. Even the act of eating can take a toll on the teeth and gums, so it’s important to make sure you’re practicing the best oral hygiene habits possible to keep teeth strong and healthy.
How to prevent cavities
Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time. Use a soft-bristled brush and fluoride-rich toothpaste. Your dentist can recommend specific products based on your dental health needs. Floss daily to remove plaque from between teeth. Plaque that is not removed turns into tartar, which is difficult to remove at home.
Tartar cannot be removed by brushing or flossing and requires professional cleaning. Regularly visit your dentist for checkups and cleanings. Professional cleanings help keep your teeth and gums healthy by removing buildup that cannot be removed at home.
How often should you brush and floss?
Brushing should be done at least twice a day for two to three minutes and flossing at least once a night is vital. Your dentist can recommend the best toothbrush for you, but you should always choose a soft or medium-bristled toothbrush with a small head. Electric toothbrushes are great for those with mobility issues and those with special needs. Flossing removes plaque and food particles that your toothbrush can’t reach.
Waxed floss works best for most people as it is thin enough to go in between teeth without snapping. If you’re having trouble fitting the floss between your teeth, try using an alternative like an oral irrigator or water pick. These, too, will remove food and other debris from between teeth.
To find out more about the dental services offered at our dental practice, call (404) 227-5012 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit us at 827 Blossom Hill Road, Suite E-3, San Jose, CA 95123.