Proper oral hygiene prevents harmful bacteria from attacking your teeth and gums. Some people’s mouths contain very harmful bacterial colonies. Other people have naturally healthier mouths. This explains why some people can be diligent about oral hygiene and get cavities, while other people are not so diligent but have healthy teeth. If you brush twice a day, floss daily, and still get cavities, don’t give up. You’d be in much worse shape if you slacked off on your oral hygiene routine. However, there are a few things you can do to make your oral hygiene routine more effective.
There’s such a thing as too much of a good thing. If you use a very hard toothbrush or brush too vigorously, you can actually damage your teeth and gums. Use a soft-bristled brush and ADA approved toothbrush. Brush gently for about 2 minutes, being sure to brush all tooth surfaces. Many of our patients have also had good luck with electric toothbrushes and water picks, but expensive equipment won’t take the place of a good routine.
Brushing after meals can remove food, but it can also damage your teeth. When you eat, the bacteria in your mouth produce acid that eats away at the enamel of your teeth. Brushing right after a meal can accelerate this process. Meanwhile, brushing before meals removes bacteria and protects your teeth.
Instead of brushing immediately after a meal, try rinsing your mouth with water. This can restore your mouth’s normal pH and protect your teeth.
Fluoridated water is one reason that people today keep their teeth longer than our parents and grandparents did. If you’re not on city water, or if you use a reverse osmosis machine or mostly drink bottled water, ask Dr. Kitt about fluoride supplements. Remember, teeth start forming before you’re born, so pregnant women should also make sure they’re getting enough fluoride to protect their babies’ teeth.
Regular cleanings can remove plaque and tartar and prevent bacteria from damaging your teeth. Dr. Parris Kitt and his staff can help you protect your teeth for years to come. If you need a Flint dentist, schedule an appointment at 903-561-4477.