Did you know that dental plaque is the main cause of many oral health issues? Plaque is an invisible film of bacteria that uses the sugar in your mouth to create an acid. This acid then attacks your teeth and gums over time. Our Shelby Township dentists can provide professional help but you also have to practice at-home care.
Here are 4 ways to maintain a healthy smile between appointments at our Shelby Township dental office.
1. Brush Your Teeth At Least Twice a Day
All dentists would agree that it’s best to brush your teeth at least twice a day for at least two minutes at a time. That way, you’ll be able to remove plaque before it has a chance to harden into tartar.
While you can, only a dental professional can adequately remove tartar. In fact, our hygienists use a tool known as a scaler to gently scrape away tartar that’s formed on your teeth. If you want to hear less scraping next time you’re in the dental chair, remember to brush better!
It’s also important to always brush your teeth before going to bed. Otherwise, you’ll be bathing your teeth in sugar while you sleep. This increases your risk of cavities, gum disease, sensitive teeth, bad breath, and many other oral health issues.
2. Floss Once Daily
Flossing your teeth once a day helps to remove any plaque or food particles caught between teeth. By flossing regularly, you’ll be able to avoid any cavities that form between teeth and along the gum line.
Adding floss to your oral hygiene routine is wise, especially if you feel like something is caught between your teeth.
3. Use a Fluoride Mouth Rinse
Fluoride helps strengthen tooth enamel so it’s more resistant to acid attacks from plaque. If we notice a lot of plaque buildup during your next appointment, we may recommend adding a fluoride mouth rinse to your oral care routine.
Pro-tip: find a mouthwash that has an ADA (American Dental Association) seal of approval. This seal indicates that the product has been proven safe and effective.
4. See Our Dentists Every 6 Months
One of the secrets to good oral health is seeing our dentists on a regular basis. In general, most patients only need to see us every 6 months. That way, we’re able to examine the inside of their mouth and take any necessary dental X-rays. During a teeth cleaning appointment, we also remove any plaque and tartar buildup.
The only exception to the 6 month rule may be if you have a chronic condition. Under these circumstances, our dentists would recommend more frequent visits so they can closely monitor your oral health. For example, you may need to see our dentists more often if you have periodontitis.
Your appointment is also a good opportunity for us to examine any restorations, such as fillings and crowns. If a dental restoration shows any signs of wear and tear, we may recommend replacing it before it compromises the tooth. For reference, a dental crown may last between 5 and 15 years.
By catching small issues early, we’re able to reduce your risk of needing emergency dental care.
Request an Appointment With Us
Ready to take the next step? Our dentists in Shelby Charter Township, MI would be more than happy to help you on your journey to a healthier smile! To request an appointment, call the dental office of Jeffrey T. Baker DDS PC at (586) 992-9222.
This blog has been updated.