To help prevent everything from tooth decay to gum disease, you need to care for your smile each and every day. Even if you brush and floss, you may be doing so improperly! In today’s blog, your Cleveland, TX, dentist talks about how to properly brush and floss your teeth, and when to see your dentist for treatment.
The Risks of Major Plaque
Plaque buildup is a bacterial byproduct that forms when oral bacteria break down particles of starch and sugar left behind by the foods and drinks we consume. This creates and coats the teeth in plaque and over time, the buildup can worsen and even harden into tartar. These layers weaken outer enamel and inflame gum tissues, a recipe for tooth decay and gum disease. You could also experience a higher risk of teeth stains and bad breath! When we take proper care of our smiles, this limits how much plaque can form until we see you for a cleaning where we remove the buildup entirely.
Brushing Your Teeth
You should brush your teeth first thing in the morning and then do the same before going to bed. Each session should take about two minutes to ensure you’re reaching every surface properly. Choose a brush, whether electric or manual, with soft bristles. This prevents inadvertent enamel erosion or gum recession if you brush too hard. As for your toothpaste, be sure you use one with fluoride. Looking for the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance on the packaging Fluoride helps strengthen the outer layer, reducing your risk of developing cavities. Remember, this isn’t just for adults. Kids of all ages need to brush or have their teeth brushed, starting with the first baby tooth!
Flossing Between Them
While a toothbrush is effective, this cannot reach the particles trapped between the teeth. For this, you need floss. Take an 18-inch length of tape and wrap each end around one of your thumbs, holding it taut with your index fingers. Move the tape up and down each side of every tooth, dipping below the gum line. This extracts the particles that could cause plaque buildup. A floss pick is beneficial for kids and those with limited dexterity, and you can also look at a water flosser. You should do this every evening before bed!
If you have any questions about caring for your smile, then contact our team today.
Do You Have Any Questions?
Our team wants to help control plaque and protect your smile. If you have any questions about cleaning your teeth, or if you would like to schedule a consultation today, please contact Cleveland Family Dentistry in Cleveland, TX, at (281) 592-1234. You can also find our practice at 205 E. Houston St. Cleveland, TX 77327.