Pamper Your Smile For National Dental Hygiene Month

a woman in a red sweater

Obviously you want to do the right thing for your smile and take care of it all year long.

But did you know that October is National Dental Hygiene Month? With that in mind, we’d like to take a moment to give you a few tips on how you can enjoy a beautiful, healthy smile. As always, if you have any questions or if you’d like to make an appointment, call our friendly team today.

Brush Your Pearly Whites Twice a Day For Two Minutes

You know you should brush your teeth regularly, but did you know you should do it for two minutes two times a day? That’s the recommendation from the American Dental Association. The easiest way to make sure you’re brushing for the full two minutes is to use a timer on your phone or look at the second hand on a watch or clock.

Here are some other things to keep in mind when brushing:

  • Divide your mouth into quadrants and brush each quadrant for 30 seconds before moving on (top outer, top inner, bottom outer, bottom inner).
  • Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and use a gentle up-and-down motion.
  • When brushing the inner surfaces of your teeth, hold your brush vertically.
  • Be sure to brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.

Good brushing habits will go a long way toward improving your overall oral health.

Flossing Daily Will Help Prevent Problems

Many of us put flossing on the back burner, but it is an essential part of good, at-home oral hygiene. Without flossing, you’re missing a full 40 percent of your teeth surfaces! Flossing will remove trapped food particles in between your teeth and help you avoid cavities and gum disease.

Here’s the best way to floss:

  • Take about 18 inches of floss (either waxed or unwaxed is fine) and wrap it around both of your middle fingers, leaving about two inches to work with.
  • Hold the floss between your thumbs and forefingers and gently work it in between each of your teeth, using both up-and-down movements as well as side-to-side.
  • Unwind additional floss as needed when it begins to wear thin or gets soiled.
  • Gently curve the floss around each tooth to work the floss just under the gumline. Be careful not to irritate your gums.

That’s it! Do that at least once a day and you’ll be on your way to a healthier smile.

Rinse Daily to Kill Bacteria

Although daily brushing and flossing are absolutely essential, they don’t actually clean your entire mouth. Biofilm and plaque can hang out on your tongue, gums, and the roof of your mouth. That’s why rinsing every day is a great idea. Buy a good quality mouthwash or rinse that kills germs but doesn’t contain any alcohol. Alcohol actually has a drying effect and can interfere with the balance of saliva in your mouth.

Always follow the directions on the package, but a good rule of thumb is to rinse once daily for at least 30 seconds to a minute. Doing so will kill bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease, plus it will help you maintain the best breath possible. It’s a win-win situation!

Chew Sugarless Gum to Keep Your Teeth Clean

Clinical studies have proven the benefit of chewing sugarless gum – it helps stimulate the production of saliva that is so crucial to washing away food and debris from your teeth. So, after each meal or snack, simply chew a piece of sugarless gum for at least 20 minutes. Avoid any gum (or mints for that matter) that contain sugar.

This easy habit will help remove bacteria and food particles, plus it will freshen your breath. You won’t have to worry about any embarrassing social encounters right after indulging in your favorite onion- or garlic-containing lunch!

Visit My Dentist in Plano Every Six Months

No matter how well you take care of your teeth at home, don’t neglect your routine dental exams and cleanings. These regular visits allow Dr. Dickson and our team to monitor your oral health and provide early treatment for any problems that come up. Following a regimen of semi-annual visits will help you maintain the brightest, healthiest smile possible.

If we do happen to spot any problems that need attention, your smile will be in good hands. We provide many types of dental care in our modern, comfortable dentist office. Our services include:

Whatever your smile needs, you’ll find it here. So, be good to your smile and yourself for National Dental Hygiene Month – call My Dentist in Plano today to schedule your next dental visit. You can also request an appointment using our online form.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.