Maintaining good dental hygiene can greatly reduce the risk of developing oral disease, tooth decay, and other infections and ailments that could frequently land you an appointment at the dentist.
We call taking great care of your teeth both in and outside of our office preventative dental care. It’s far more cost-effective, keeps your oral and overall health in check, and allows any hygiene appointments and check-ups that you do have to be a breeze. If you’re still not convinced, we’ll first go over how to take great care of your teeth to prevent future oral health problems and all the benefits of doing so.
Brush and Floss Your Teeth Daily
One of the best and easiest ways to maintain your oral health is to commit to a daily brushing regime. In order to prevent tooth decay, oral disease and just general poor oral health, it’s recommended that you brush at least twice per day. You can go above and beyond and brush 3-4 times, just make sure not to over brush! Over-brushing your teeth, along with brushing too hard, can lead to gum recession over time if you aren’t careful. Along with brushing at least twice per day, make sure you’re brushing for at least two minutes. If you have trouble keeping track of how long you’re brushing for, you can set a timer to make sure you’re doing it right.
It’s important to integrate flossing into your routine, too. While brushing works to remove debris, bacteria, and helps to prevent plaque from building up and hardening on the surface of your teeth, floss can catch small areas and crevices your toothbrush may be too large to fully clean. Floss keeps plaque from piling up between your teeth, and can also prevent halitosis. If you have braces, you may need to get floss threaders to get between the metal brackets so no area is left unchecked.
To get the most out of both brushing and flossing, it’s important to have the right technique. At your next hygiene appointment, you can always ask your dentist for pointers and advice, or a demonstration to make sure you have it down.
Drink Lots of Water
While it may be tempting to reach for soda, juice, and coffee and tea on the regular, you should try to drink water in between and with meals for optimal oral health. Water helps to clean your teeth, wash away any leftover particles, food, or bacteria, and most importantly, doesn’t leave a film that can stick to your teeth. Sodas and juices are full of sugar, and if consumed on a regular basis and left on the teeth for too long, can end up causing cavities.
See Your Dentist Every Six Months
While this seems frequent, it’s highly recommended that you visit your dentist for a check-up and cleaning twice yearly. Those with more severe dental issues or a history of poor oral health may need to see their dentist more often, but scheduling an appointment every six months will work for the average person. Your dentist will be able to tell you if they believe you need a couple of extra appointments in a calendar year.
These frequent dental cleanings and exams allow your dentist many opportunities to identify any possible issues, and to deep clean your teeth. By frequently visiting the dentist and constantly monitoring your oral health, your dentist will be able to catch any problems very early on, and before they can become serious. Physically going to the dentist is a big part of preventative dentistry! Keeping your teeth clean and free of plaque can also prevent the need for expensive procedures in the future, or any restorative work.
What Are the Benefits of Preventative Dentistry?
Peace of Mind
By knowing you’re taking great care of your oral health, being careful, and committing to regular hygiene appointments, you’ll feel comfortable with the state and future of your oral health. Instead of worrying about tooth decay, or other oral diseases, you’ll be able to feel comfortable with the health of your smile!
Some people avoid the dentist out of having dental anxiety, not having the time, or simply being forgetful. Continuing to neglect your oral health over time by not visiting the dentist often enough can cause it to decline, and the decline could be expensive.
Restorative work down the road can be both costly, and time-consuming. By taking care of your smile in increments over the years, you could end up saving your pocket money!
Gum Disease and Cavity Prevention
These benefits might be some of the most important ones. Over time and without proper cleanings, tooth decay can easily build-up to the point of becoming a severe problem. If your gums aren’t being monitored, gum disease also becomes a very likely scenario. Gum disease is a very common problem that affects most people in their lifetime, and your dentist will be able to spot any indications of it early on and nip them in the bud.
A healthy, great smile can do wonders for your confidence. Sticking to a well-developed oral hygiene routine that involves maintaining your hygiene at home, scheduling and attending regular dentist appointments, and being mindful of any irregular changes in your oral health will ensure you’re armed with a beautiful smile for life!