Prevention is the keyMost people know that having a clean mouth is important. It makes you feel good about yourself. It gives you fresh breath and a nicer-looking smile. Since childhood, you've probably heard that brushing and flossing your teeth daily are necessary for good dental health. But like many people, you may not be sure why.

Brushing and flossing remove a thin sticky film of bacteria that grows on your teeth. This sticky film, called plaque, is the main cause of tooth decay and gum disease. How can bacteria cause so many problems?

Many of the foods you eat cause the bacteria in your mouth to produce acids. Sugared foods, such as candy and cookies, are not the only culprits. Starches, such as bread, crackers, and cereal, also cause acids to form. If you snack often, you could be having acid attacks all day long. After many acid attacks, your teeth may decay.

Plaque also produces substances that irritate the gums, making them red, tender or bleed easily. After a while, gums may pull away from the teeth. Pockets form and fill with more bacteria and pus. If the gums are not treated, the bone around the teeth can be destroyed. The teeth may become loose or have to be removed. In fact, gum disease is a main cause of tooth loss in adults.

One way to prevent tooth decay and gum disease is by eating a balanced diet and limiting the number of between-meal snacks. If you need a snack, choose nutritious foods such as raw vegetables, plain yogurt, cheese or a piece of fruit.

Gum Disease

Periodontal Disease
Normal, Healthy Gingival (gums)
; periodontal ligament and bone anchor teeth firmly in place. 

Gingivitis; plaque and its byproducts irritate the gums, making them tender, inflamed and likely to bleed. 

Periodontitis; unremoved, plaque hardens into calculus (tartar). As plaque and calculus continue to build up, the gums being to recede (pull away) from the teeth, and pockets form between the teeth and gums. 

Advance Periodontitis; The gums recede farther, destroying more bone and the periodontal ligament, Teeth-even teeth without decay - may become loose and need to be extracted. 

Periodontal Disease Management
Subgingival scaling

Root planing

Other Treatments
Oral irrigation in conjunction with scaling and root planing

Antibiotic therapy

Additional homecare beyond daily brushing and flossing

Daily Oral Care

The best way to remove decay-causing plaque is by brushing and cleaning between your teeth every day. Brushing removes plaque from the tooth surfaces. Brush your teeth twice a day, with a soft-bristled brush. The size and shape of your brush should fit your mouth, allowing you to reach all areas easily. Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps protect your teeth from decay. When choosing any dental product, look for the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance, an important symbol of a dental product's safety and effectiveness.

Cleaning between the teeth with floss or interdental cleaners removes plaque from between the teeth, areas where the toothbrush can't reach. It is essential in preventing gum disease.

Regular dental preventive visits along with good home care are both required for good dental health. You cannot just do one or the other. The recommended frequency for most people including children is one every 6 months. Some individuals require more or less frequent visits, but it is important to allow your dentist to determine the frequency. Our Hygenists removes tartar and stain from the teeth and then a certified dentist checks for decay, periodontal disease, broken restorations, oral cancer, and other dental problems which might arise. X-rays are taken yearly to identify hidden problems between the teeth and with the supporting structures of the teeth.

Areas of periodontal concern may be treated with a procedure called scaling and root planing, normally performed by Janet while the area of the mouth to be treated is numb. The entire surface of the un-attached root surface under the gumline is smoothed and polished. Some periodontal problems require referral to a dental specialist called a periodontist.

Certain individuals with heartmummers and certain artificial joints or valves are subject to certain infections when the teeth are cleaned and during other dental procedures. If you have any of these conditions, we will prescribe antibiotics that you take before the procedure. Please click here for more information from the American Heart Association.

By taking care of your teeth, eating a balanced diet and visiting your dentist regularly, you can have healthy teeth and an attractive smile your entire life. Follow these tips to keep your teeth and mouth clean:

How to brush your teethBrushing Tips

  • Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against the gums.
  • Move the brush back and forth gently in short (toothwide) strokes.
  • Brush the outer tooth surfaces, the inner tooth surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of the teeth.
  • Hold the brush straight out of your mouth to clean the inside surfaces of the front teeth, using a gentle in and out stroke.
  • Brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.
Brush the front inside and your tongue In general, a tooth brush head should be small (1 " by 1/2") for easy access. It should have a long, grasp. It should have soft, nylon bristles with round ends. Some brushes are too abrasive and can wear down teeth. A soft, rounded, multitufted brush can clean teeth effectively. Press just firmly enough to reach the spaces between the teeth as well as the surface. Medium and hard bristles are not recommended.

It might be a good idea to brush with the radio on, since dentists generally recommend brushing 3-4 minutes-the length of an average song. Using an egg timer is another way to measure your brushing time. Patients generally think they're brushing longer, but most spend less than a minute brushing. To make sure you're doing a thorough job and not missing any spots, patients are advised to brush the full 3-4 minutes twice a day instead of brushing quickly five or more times through the day.

Use a short piece of floss, wrap around the fingers, then floss!Flossing Facts
  • Break off about 18 inches of floss and wind most of it around one of your middle fingers.
  • Wind the remaining floss around the same finger of the opposite hand. This finger will take up the floss as it becomes dirty.
  • Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and forefingers. Guide the floss between your teeth using a gentle rubbing motion.
  • Never snap the floss into the gums.
  • When the floss reaches the gumline, curve it into a C shape against one tooth. Gently slide it into the space between the gum and the tooth.
  • Hold the floss tightly against the tooth. Gently rub the side of the tooth, moving the floss away from the gum with up and down motions.
  • Repeat this method on the rest of your teeth. Don't forget the back side of your last tooth.
  • People who have difficulty handling dental floss may prefer to use another kind of interdental cleaner. These aids include special brushes and floss holders. If you use interdental cleaners, ask our hygenists about how to use them properly, to avoid injuring your gums.
  • If in doubt, Please ask us to show you how to hold and use the floss.
Floss removes plaque and debris that adhere to teeth and gums in between teeth, polishes tooth surfaces, and controls bad breath. Floss is the single most important weapon against plaque, perhaps more important than the toothbrush. Many people just don't spend enough time flossing or brushing and many have never been taught to floss or brush properly.

Please let us know how we can help!

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