Good oral hygiene habits prevent more than bad breath and dingy teeth. Your Mount Prospect, IL dentist, Dr. George Mui at Gentle Dental Care, teaches all his patients the value of keeping their teeth and gums free of plaque and tartar. Really, prevention is indeed the best medicine, and just a bit of your time each day can help your smile be its best for life.
Why every day?
We brush twice a day and floss every day because we eat every day. From food comes a sticky residue called plaque. If it contains a lot of carbohydrates, it also teems with oral bacteria which lead to cavities and gum disease. Plaque quickly hardens into tartar, or calculus, which also contains a lot of micro-organisms, but beyond that, tartar build-up literally pushes gums away from tooth surfaces. The Academy of General Dentistry reminds patients to brush their germy tongues and other soft oral tissues, too.
Also, we eat a good diet every day to clean tooth surfaces and to ward off that accumulated plaque. A tooth-friendly diet includes water, a natural cleanser which also stimulates beneficial saliva.
What good oral hygiene looks like
Gentle tooth brushing should take about two minutes twice a day, says the American Dental Association. Use a soft brush and fluoride toothpaste, and be sure to cover the back, front, and chewing surfaces of all your teeth. Rinse with your choice of water, anti-bacterial mouthwash, or a mouth rinse containing fluoride, as your Mount Prospect dentist advises.
Then, there's daily flossing. Use a clean strand of floss each time, and form a c-shape with it using the thumbs and forefingers of each hand. When you move the floss up and down between your teeth, go slowly, and never snap the floss against tender gums. Expect a little blood if you're new to flossing, and also expect a better check-up when you see your hygienist at Gentle Dental Care.
As a reminder, see your dentist and hygienist in Mount Prospect every six months for your exam, X-rays and of course, cleaning. Professional prophylaxis removes plaque and tartar you miss when you brush and floss at home. Plus, your six-month exam is key to uncovering problems as they develop and can be treated easily.
A healthy diet
Limit sugars and carbs. On the positive side of things, add calcium-rich dairy products, low-fat protein and plenty of fiber with whole grain bread, vegetables, and fruits.
Of course, avoid tobacco, and limit alcohol consumption. Both contribute to gum disease and oral cancer.
Your best smile
You help maintain it with consistent oral hygiene habits. Partner with the professional team at Gentle Dental Care in Mount Prospect, IL for healthy teeth and gums that last. Call for your routine appointment with Dr. Mui: (847) 253-5901.