Ideally, you should only visit the dentist twice a year, for your biannual dental checkups and cleanings. If you practice good enough hygiene at home, then a professional cleaning and thorough inspection should see your smile through good health until your next visit. To help you make the most of your home hygiene routine, Dr. Maria and Dr. Thanasi Loukas offer tips for taking better care of your teeth while at the bathroom sink to protect them while you’re away from it.
Brushing and flossing
· Brush softly, with soft bristles—the enamel that surrounds your teeth is highly-resilient, but also sensitive to excessive abrasion. Harsh bristles and rough scrubbing can strip your teeth of enamel and expose them to cavity-inducing bacteria. Also, using fluoride toothpaste will help strengthen tooth enamel against harmful microbes.
· Keep your floss fresh—as you work your dental floss between each tooth, be sure to curve the floss to follow the contour of the tooth to remove all particles and plaque from the tooth’s side. Continuously unspool fresh floss as you change teeth to avoid spreading the plaque around.
· Don’t underestimate (or overestimate) mouthwash—as a liquid, mouthrinse can prove an invaluable addition to your hygiene arsenal. Swishing it around can loosen and remove plaque and debris from areas your toothbrush and floss can’t reach, particularly around the back teeth. Antibacterial mouthrinse can even target specifically-harmful oral bacteria. However, mouthrinse is largely useless by itself, and should only be used in combination with a good brushing-and-flossing routine, not as a substitute for one.
· Brush your tongue, too—some of the germs in your mouth, especially those responsible for bad breath, like to hang out on the surface of your tongue instead of your teeth. Using your toothbrush or a tongue scraper, be sure to clean the top, bottom, and sides of your tongue when you brush and floss your teeth.
About Your Chicago Dentists:
Though we can rebuild your smile if it’s compromised by cavities or gum disease, preventing such issues with improved dental hygiene can help you avoid the need for complex restorative treatment. Dr. Maria and Dr. Thanasi Loukas are highly-skilled general, cosmetic, and implant dentists serving the Park Ridge and surrounding Chicago communities. To schedule an appointment, call Loukas General Dentistry today at (847) 696-1919.