Keep It Clean With Preventive Dental Care
- October 15, 2016
Every now and then, it’s a good idea to revisit the basics. For us, that means stressing the importance of preventive dental care.
And there’s is no better time to do that than just before Halloween candy arrives. October is also National Dental Hygiene Month.
Take a moment to refresh your memory on the basics of good dental health, including coming to the office of Robert I. Hlavac, D.D.S. for your family dentistry.
Today is a great day to make an appointment for your family to have a professional cleaning and examination at our dentist office in Concord, CA.
Daily Preventive Dental Care
Everyone at Dr. Hlavac’s office wants you and your family to enjoy Halloween, including some candy (more on that in a moment). But we also want to remind you of the things you should be doing to prevent tooth decay, cavities, and other oral health issues.
The American Dental Association and the American Dental Hygienists Association both advocate brushing and flossing every day. We support that as well.
Everyone is encouraged to brush their teeth twice per day. You should use a soft-bristled toothbrush with at pea-sized squeeze of fluoride toothpaste to scrub your teeth for two minutes at a time. Be sure you brush your teeth from every angle and your tongue before spitting out the toothpaste.
Rinse your toothbrush before putting it back in its place. And remember you should replace your toothbrush every three to four months.
Flossing made the news recently, which is why it’s good to remind you that there is value in cleaning between your teeth and gums on a daily basis. If nothing else, flossing is a way to remove food particles from places that you can’t reach with a toothbrush.
Now, when we say flossing, we mean any interdental cleaner. This can be dental floss. It could also be flossers (short handles with a piece of floss on one end), or you can use a water flosser.
The third piece of this puzzle is just as important as the first two even if you only do it a couple times each year.
We hope you will visit Dr. Hlavac’s office routinely for professional cleanings. Unlike a lot of dental office’s Dr. Hlavac does the cleanings himself. For him, this is part of providing the most complete dental care possible for each member of your family.
He will remove any plaque or tartar buildup from your teeth, and he will keep an eye out for tooth decay. Catching it early makes it easier to treat.
Preventive Dental Care: Extra Credit
Brushing, flossing, and visiting Dr. Hlavac’s office are the foundation of your oral health, but you can kick it up a notch with a few more simple steps.
Using a fluoride mouthrinse, can help to strengthen the enamel of your teeth. Using an antimicrobial mouthrinse can remove more biofilm and bacteria (which cause tooth decay) from your mouth.
You also can help yourself by chewing sugar-free gum with xylitol after meals and snacks. Chewing sugar-free gum continues saliva production, which helps to remove small food particles. The gum also helps to reduce the acidity levels, which makes it harder for bacteria to cause tooth decay.
Preventive Dental Care: Halloween Tips
For these tips, we are turning to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. They have a few ideas worth sharing as you are still planning this year’s Halloween costumes.
► Decide on a candy limit. Sit down with your children before your children go out trick-or-treating to discuss how much candy they can keep. Also, discuss ways they can use the extra candy to help someone else.
► Don’t eat too much candy. This may seem like it goes without saying, but we remember what Halloween was like when we were kids. Eating a few pieces of candy after a meal isn’t too bad.
Eating a whole bag of candy as a meal is just an invitation for bacteria to starting eating into your teeth.
► Keep a glass of water close at hand. Drinking water while you eat sweets helps to remove sugary food particles. Those same particles attract bacteria that cause tooth decay.
► Brush your teeth. We know we said it already, but we are repeating it for emphasis. Brushing as soon as you are able after you eat a sugary snack is a good way to reduce your risk of getting cavities.
‘Treat’ Your Teeth Right
Whether it’s Halloween or any other day, you need to take care of your mouth to protect your smile.