While brushing and flossing are the main components of your at-home oral healthcare routine, there are other things you can do to help maintain your oral health. Here's what our Lloydminster dentists recommend.
Brushing your teeth is an essential part of your at-home routine. You should aim to brush your teeth at least twice a day, for 2 minutes at a time.
For ideal results, brush each “quadrant” of your teeth (upper right, upper left, lower right, lower left) for 30 seconds. Carefully brush all the exposed surfaces of your teeth, including the fronts, backs and biting surfaces of each tooth.
Tip: Try an Electric Toothbrush
An electric toothbrush makes it easier to clean your teeth. They require less effort than manual brushes since they perform the correct brushing movement for you. Choose an electric toothbrush with a round, rotating head, as this makes the ideal circular brushing motion.
In addition, because the head is quite small it’s easier to clean those awkward, hard-to-reach spots, like your back molars and the backs of your front teeth.
You should floss at least once a day, preferably at night before bed. Flossing dislodges food debris and build-up from between your teeth, in the places your toothbrush can’t reach.
Insert the floss between two teeth and run it up and down the side of each, pulling it into a “c” shape in both directions. Proceed slowly and thoroughly, and be sure to floss between every two teeth.
Professional Dental Cleanings & Check-ups
Visiting the dentist every six months for a professional hygiene cleaning and dental exam is essential to maintaining oral health.
Your dentist has the expertise and tools required to remove plaque and tartar build-up that you can't remove yourself by brushing and flossing at home.
Your dentist can also spot any emerging oral health issues and treat them before they get worse. Oral health problems like cavities, gum disease, and even tumours or cysts are often not noticeable to the untrained eye in their early stages, so it's important to get your mouth evaluated regularly by a dental professional.
Eating a healthy diet that’s rich in calcium helps keep your teeth healthy from the inside out. You should also limit the amount of sugars and starches you consume because oral bacteria thrive on these and it can increase the amount of plaque that forms on your teeth.
Staying hydrated can help prevent cavities! Drinking plenty of water will help you maintain a sufficient saliva flow, and saliva washes away the food particles that collect on your teeth and allow bacteria to multiply.
Supplementary Hygiene Aids
Oral hygiene aids are additions to your brushing and flossing routine. Good examples of supplementary hygiene aids include tongue cleaners, mouthwash, interdental cleaners, and oral irrigators.
These aids can help you keep your breath fresh, and prevent plaque from building up between brushing and flossing sessions. While they are not sufficient replacements for a thorough brushing and flossing routine, they can definitely help improve it.