Give Back to Your Mouth with Incredible Oral Hygiene
The importance of good oral hygiene really can’t be overstated, especially since great at-home oral hygiene coupled with regular dental checkups are the surest ways of protecting yourself against cavities, periodontal disease and other oral issues. Brushing and flossing twice daily is a must.
Brushing Twice a Day for Healthy Teeth and Gums
When you brush your teeth, make sure that you’re getting those hard-to-reach places in the back of your mouth.
The first, second and third molars near your wisdom teeth at the back of your mouth can be especially difficult for most people to brush well enough to combat bacteria, but the proper technique can go a long way.
Make sure that you’re brushing your teeth with the bristles angled at about a 45-degree slant toward the gum line to scrape away the kinds of plaques and bacteria that like to call that area home.
You really want to find that sweet spot as you brush in an up-and-down motion — hard enough to scrape away plaque and bacteria, but not so hard that you damage your tooth’s outer layer, the enamel.
Remember to Floss
Flossing is also really important since it can help to remove food particles and bacteria wedged between your teeth that regular brushing might miss.
Remember, this really isn’t an either/or proposition. You should be brushing and flossing every day, and one can’t possibly substitute for the other.
When you floss, though, make sure that you gently follow the curvature of the tooth and that you don’t make any jerky, erratic movements that could harm your gums.
There are actually two signs that you may not be brushing correctly or that you might be dealing with a more severe oral issue — bleeding gums are one sign, and bad breath (aka halitosis) is another.
Bleeding gums might be the early stages of gum disease or they could just mean that you’re brushing too roughly or abrasively.
If you’re dealing with bad breath, a good first step to take is brushing your tongue once you’re done with your teeth.
You could also try gently brushing the roof of your mouth to remove harmful bacteria that might be contributing to your halitosis.
The only way to make sure that bleeding gums or bad breath aren’t actually more serious issues is to check in with your dentist or periodontist and have your teeth and gums checked out.
Still Having Issues? Consider an Antimicrobial Mouth Rinse and Checkup
There are actually mouthwashes and antimicrobial mouth rinses out there that can complement your daily brushing and flossing regimen, as well as reduce the incidence of plaque and other harmful bacteria in your mouth.
Although nothing can replace a periodontist if you’re having severe gum issues, an antimicrobial rinse can significantly reduce the presence of harmful bacteria and different kinds of plaque that cause or exacerbate conditions like gingivitis and gum disease.
Using a mouthwash or antimicrobial rinse in addition to daily brushing and flossing might be especially important steps for seniors to take since 80 percent of the entire U.S. population is battling some form of gum disease. What’s more, the incidence of gingivitis and periodontal disease tends to increase as we age — putting older adults at especially high risk.
Another thing that you might try, in light of the fact that about the same percentage of people (75 percent) don’t change their brushes as frequently as they should, is swapping your old toothbrush for a new one about every three months.
For everything else, visit your periodontist to optimize your oral health and ensure a great smile for life! Contact us at Central Florida Periodontics & Implantology for a consultation today!