There are plenty of ways to maintain healthy teeth and gums. With so much information out there, how can you now which methods are effective for your needs? Today, your general dentist in Denver goes back to the basics of oral health and explains the top four ways that patients can preserve their oral health for years to come.
At Metropolitan Dental Care, we offer a wide range of preventative treatments to protect your smile from tooth decay, gum disease, and other forms of dental damage. No matter what your specific needs, we can find a solution that will work for you. In the meantime, read up on these oral health tips and tricks from your general dentist in Denver.
Practice Proper Brushing Techniques
It seems that everyone has an opinion on the best ways to brush your teeth. It’s true, there are several different schools of thought; and if you ask ten different dentists how to clean your pearly whites, chances are, you’ll hear ten different responses. The truth is, it really doesn’t matter if you brush up and down, across, or in circles. The most important things to remember are:
- Use a soft-bristled brush: Medium or hard toothbrushes may feel like they’re getting the job done. In reality, however, these brushes can actually contribute to enamel erosion and gum recession. A soft-bristled brush is amazingly effective and completely safe.
- Don’t forget the gums: Plaque tends to accumulate around the gum line. As a result, bacteria hide in the sulcus – the area where the tooth meets the gum. When you are brushing, don’t neglect the gum line. We recommend angling the toothbrush into the gum line to sweep away harmful microbes.
- Brush long enough: Life is busy. It can be tempting to rush through daily routines such as brushing your teeth. In order to be effective, brushing should take at least two minutes, if not more. Continue brushing until every tooth surface has been cleaned successfully.
- Brush twice a day: To be effective, patients should brush once in the morning, once in the evening, and even after every meal, if possible.
Your general dentist in Denver can help you design a personalized at-home oral hygiene regimen that will work for you.
Practice Proper Flossing Techniques
Flossing is essential to daily oral health. Unlike brushing, flossing really only needs to be completed once a day. However, it is important to set aside plenty of time so you can be thorough.
To floss properly, take a long piece of floss, about 18 inches long. Wrap the ends around the middle finger on each hand. This will allow you to use the thumbs and index fingers to guide the floss. There may only be one space between teeth, but there are two difference surfaces to clean. Therefore, it is important to develop the correct technique. Place the floss between two teeth and wrap it around one tooth; the floss should resemble a “C” shape. Next, gently slide the floss toward the gum line, going as deep as comfortably possible. Seven to ten strokes are ideal. Now, wrap the floss around the neighboring tooth and repeat the process.
Avoid Starchy and Sugary Foods
The oral bacteria found in plaque feed off of sugary and starchy foods. This doesn’t mean they should be avoided altogether. However, consuming them in moderation can be beneficial for both you oral and overall health. Whenever you do have sugary or starchy foods, brush your teeth or rinse your mouth out with water to wash away debris.
Attend All Routine Dental Visits
Even the most diligent home care cannot take the place of professional dental cleanings. Most patients require cleanings every three to six months, depending on their unique needs. After every cleaning, the bacteria levels in the mouth are reduced to a healthy level. It takes a few months for bacteria to repopulate. However, once they do, it will require a dental cleaning to effectively address the situation and bring the harmful levels to baseline again. Your general dentist in Denver can help you determine how often you should attend regular dental hygiene visits.
Contact Your General Dentist in Denver
When it comes to home dental care, focus on quality instead of quantity. While expensive brushes and waterpiks are nice to have, they are not always necessary. Our Denver dentists can help you determine a hygiene regimen that will work for you. Metropolitan Dental Care is proud to serve Denver, and the surrounding communities of Centennial, Highlands Ranch, and Parker. To schedule an appointment at our practice, contact us online or call us at 303-534-2626.