Are You Keeping Good Oral Hygiene Habits?

By James B Lemmons D.D.S.
May 23, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Oral Hygiene  

Your dentist in Greensboro, NC, loves seeing healthy gums and teeth. You're more likely to have a great six-month examination if you keep Woman brushing her teethgood oral hygiene habits. Dr. James Lemmons and his team teach the best preventive dental techniques to all their patients--young and old, and these routines are simpler than you may think. Yet, they pay big dividends of beautiful, long-lasting smiles.

Four steps to good oral hygiene

Taking care of your teeth and gums involves three steps. Integrated into your busy life, these habits prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems. The three steps are: brush, floss, and eat.

Brushing

You've been brushing since you were a little child, but are you brushing correctly? First off, what's your toothbrush like? Are the bristles soft? Is the head the right size for your mouth? Do you prefer manual brushes or electric? Is your toothbrush worn? When did you last have the flu or a cold?

Answer these questions honestly, and then start the right brushing routine. Brush twice daily for at least two minutes, says the American Dental Association. Use a fluoride toothpaste, and angle your brush at a 45-degree angle to your teeth. Move the brush back and forth, and clean all tooth surfaces--front, back, and chewing areas. Clean your tongue, too, as it readily retains oral bacteria. Rinse with water or a mouthwash.

Periodically inspect your brush for wear. Replace it every two to three months. If you have recovered from the flu or a cold, replace your toothbrush right away.

Flossing

It's not that complicated. Unfortunately, however, many people neglect this important habit.

Pick a flossing product you are comfortable using. Interproximal brushes, strand floss, water flossers, and Y-shaped flossers are common choices. Most people floss at bedtime.

With strand floss, wind an 18-inch length around the index fingers of your right and left hand. Pull the floss taut, and insert it gently between your top two front teeth. Creating a C-shape, move the floss up and down in the interdental space, avoiding cutting into your gums. If you are not used to flossing, your gums may bleed a bit, but this will resolve within a few days. After flossing, rinse with clear water.

Eating

There's more to a tooth- and gum-friendly diet than avoiding carbs and processed sugars. Be sure to eat fibrous vegetables and fruits to cleanse and exercise teeth and gums, and also, enjoy dairy products and high-protein meats, poultry and fish.

Water is important, too. Drink several glasses of water daily to keep teeth and gums fresh, clean and hydrated. Water helps you make saliva, too, which aids digestion and keeps oral bacteria at bay.

Happy, healthy teeth and gums in Greensboro

Enjoy them for a lifetime as you practice good oral hygiene. Dr. Lemmons and his team look forward to helping you maintain your best smile in Greensboro, NC. Call the office today for your semi-annual cleaning and check-up: (336) 292-9290.

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