Good oral hygiene habits are essential to keeping your teeth and gums clean.
Your smile may be the first thing people notice about you — but dental health is an essential part of your overall well-being. Good oral hygiene habits can prevent cavities, gum disease and more. With regular dental visits and proper at-home care, you can ensure that your teeth and gums stay healthy for years to come. Read on to learn why oral health is important — and tips for brushing your teeth — so that you can maintain a healthy mouth and strong teeth.
Why is it important to brush and floss your teeth?
It is essential to brush and floss your teeth to prevent cavities and gum disease. Brushing and flossing not only stops the build-up of plaque, which is the primary cause of tooth decay, but it also reduces the chances of developing cavities, and prevents gum disease. Inflammation associated with gum disease has impacted other diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and low birth weight babies.
Dentists recommend brushing your teeth twice per day with a fluoride toothpaste, especially at nights before bedtime. You should also floss your teeth every night. One should use an appropriate sized soft-bristled toothbrush in a gentle circular motion to clean all surfaces of your teeth. Kids should brush with a pea sized amount of fluoride toothpaste for two minutes twice per day. Child sized toothbrushes come in a variety of colors and often feature popular cartoon characters. Some even play music to help your child know how long to brush.
Brushing and flossing your teeth daily is only half of the equation, though. Regular dental check-ups along with a program of good home care are the foundation of a good prevention program. You should visit your dentist twice a year. Dentists will remove any build-up on your teeth and can spot potential issues and offer treatment solutions. According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), a child should go to the dentist by age 1 or within six months after the first tooth erupts.
How to clean your teeth and gums
It’s easy to get your mouth clean and healthy — and keep it that way. A simple routine can help prevent most dental problems. This includes:
- Gently brushing your teeth on all sides with a soft-bristle brush, moving it in a circular motion to remove plaque.
- Lightly brushing your tongue or using a tongue scraper to help keep your mouth clean.
- Cleaning between your teeth with dental floss. This removes any food or plaque that a toothbrush can’t reach.
- Using a fluoride toothpaste. This provides a protective barrier for your teeth and fights germs that lead to decay.
When is the best time to brush your teeth, exactly? Dentists recommend brushing your teeth twice a day — once in the morning and before you go to bed — for at least two minutes. This will help prevent cavities and other dental issues while also improving your overall health.
Want to learn more oral hygiene tips or schedule a check-up? Our Valleywise Health dental team is here to help. Call 1 (833) VLLYWSE or visit our website to schedule your appointment or learn more about our dental services.