Support The Health of Your Smile with Proper Oral Hygiene
Here at Family & Cosmetic Dentistry of the Rockies, it is our philosophy that prevention is often the best medicine. Just by practicing proper dental habits every day, you can easily prevent serious dental and medical problems in the future. To best maintain the health and beauty of your smile, we recommend the following best practices:
1. Brush Properly
Brushing your teeth should be an essential habit for keeping them clean on a daily basis. Though it’s a fairly simple routine, it’s also one of the easiest things to do wrong. While brushing after meals is generally recommended, brushing too soon after your meal can do more harm than good. The acidity of certain foods and beverages can weaken the enamel, and if you brush immediately after your meal, you may wind up brushing away the top layer off your tooth instead. In order to brush your teeth properly, you should:
- Floss thoroughly and rinse with water
- Use a soft brush that massages your gums
- Gently brush the front and back of your teeth, including your tongue and the roof of your mouth
- Avoid brushing too hard, because this can wear away your gum tissue
- Replace your toothbrush every 1 or 2 months
2. Floss Thoroughly before You Brush
Most patients find this habit particularly inconvenient. However, flossing may actually be more important than brushing, because it removes plaque and food where a toothbrush or mouthwash can’t reach. Flossing is especially important for the health of your gums, since trapped food and bacteria are the most common culprits behind periodontal disease. Most dentists recommend flossing at least once a day, though it may be best to floss immediately after meals if your gums are easily inflamed.
3. Rinse with Mouthwash
While mouthwash is not as important as flossing, it does promote dental health by killing bacteria that produce plaque. Mouthwashes that contain fluoride may be prescribed to reinforce your tooth enamel, especially if your tooth is on the verge of developing a cavity.
4. Don’t Smoke or Chew Tobacco (If You Can Help It)
Tobacco not only stains the teeth, but increases the risk of periodontal disease and oral cancer.
5. Minimize Your Intake of Sugary Food & Drink
Plaque-causing bacteria LOVE to eat the sugar contained in our favorite foods and beverages. The more sugar you eat, the more destructive bacteria can proliferate.
5. Eat a Nutritious Diet, Add Supplements When Necessary
Eating a nutritious diet is often easier said than done. Given our busy lifestyles, the path of least resistance often leads us to fast food and TV dinners if we’re not careful. While whole food and cooking with unprocessed ingredients are ideal, it may not always be possible. Taking supplements can ensure that you don’t go without any essential nutrients, regardless of your diet.
6. Get Regular Checkups & Cleanings
It is recommended that you get dental checkups and cleanings at least twice a year.
If you’d like to know more about what you can do to preserve your smile, or if you’d like to make an appointment, call our Fort Collins office today at 970-223-8425. You can also reach us after office hours by submitting a contact or appointment request online using the form below.