Properly caring for your teeth at home is a crucial aspect of maintaining a beautiful and healthy smile. Continue reading to learn the top oral hygiene routine tips.
The cornerstone of any good oral hygiene routine is thorough and proper brushing habits. When food, plaque, and other debris are allowed to remain on the surface of the teeth, they begin to attack and eat away at the protective layer of enamel. Over time, this has the potential to lead to decay or damage. Thoroughly brushing helps ensure that all signs of food or harmful plaque are removed from the teeth, keeping the enamel strong.
Be sure to brush your teeth twice daily for at least two minutes. Choose an Australian Dental Association (ADA) approved toothpaste that contains fluoride.
The mouth is divided into four sections known as ‘quadrants’: upper left, upper right, lower left, and lower right. To easily break up the two minutes that you spend brushing, take thirty seconds to brush each quadrant of the mouth. This will ensure that you are placing an equal amount of focus on each quadrant.
To begin, wet your toothbrush and squeeze out a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle and begin brushing in circular motions, being sure to reach all surfaces of the teeth.
Flossing is a crucial part of proper oral care; it helps ensure that any food or other debris that has become trapped in the spaces between the teeth can be removed.
To begin flossing, take a piece of floss and wrap each end around one finger on each hand and pull the string tight. Bring the floss between two adjacent teeth and guide it up towards the gums. Begin to move the floss in a “c” shape in order to curve across the surface of the tooth and move the floss back and forth to dislodge any food or debris. Once you have finished, remove the floss and rinse your mouth.
Check-Up and Cleaning Appointments
Attending your regularly scheduled check-up and cleaning appointments with your dentist is extremely important.
While it is crucial to maintain proper oral care outside of the dental office, it is possible for even the most diligent of brushers to miss a spot or two. When your dentist and dental hygienists conduct your periodic exams, they thoroughly examine the mouth to ensure that there are no signs of damage or decay. Anything that is detected can easily care for early on, which is always better than allowing the issue to progress.
Your professional teeth cleaning appointments are also important because your dental hygienist uses professional tools which ensure that all signs of plaque and tartar are removed from the surface of the teeth.
While plaque is a sticky bacterial film that can be removed with thorough brushing, tartar is a rock-hard substance that can only be removed with professional dental tools. If tartar is allowed to rest on the surface of the teeth, the bacteria inside the tartar will begin to eat away at the patient’s tooth and bone structure, potentially leading to major issues such as gum disease or extensive decay.
Always be sure to attend your regularly scheduled appointments with your dentist and dental hygienist; this is the best way to take a proactive approach to your oral hygiene.
Your diet has more of an impact on the health of your teeth than you might think.
Maintaining a diet that is rich in nutrients and vitamins is an excellent way to keep your teeth healthy, strong, and protected from damage. Teeth-friendly foods include:
- Dairy products
- Sugar-free gum
Always try to avoid sugary or acidic foods and beverages. A sweet treat every once in a while is certainly okay, but acids and sugars can prove to be quite destructive to the enamel of the teeth. Be sure to avoid:
- Soft drinks
- Lollies (both hard and sticky)
- Sugary chewing gum
- Tobacco products
For more information about maintaining your oral health, or to make an appointment at our Double Bay clinic, give us a call at 02 8319 5557.