Five Tips to Prevent Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

June 19, 2018

Avoiding cavities and dental emergencies is vital to the appearance of your smile, but even more importantly, it contributes to your overall well-being. Numerous studies have established a link between the bacteria that cause periodontal disease and several systemic illnesses.

The best way to ensure ideal oral health is by maintaining a vigilant hygiene routine. These tips can help you keep your smile beautiful and functional for a lifetime.

1)   Brush in the morning and before bedtime.

These are the best times to clean your teeth and rid your mouth of harmful bacteria that cause decay and gum disease and can lead to other health complications. Proper brushing includes: 

  • Holding an ADA approved toothbrush at a 45-degree angle starting at the gum line.
  • Gently moving the bristles back and forth in short (tooth-wide) strokes.
  • Brushing all surfaces of the teeth. 

2)   Floss Daily

It’s important to floss since your toothbrush can’t reach between your teeth. Leftover food, plaque, and tartar accumulate in these cavity-prone areas, and decay begins quickly if not cleaned every day. Follow these guidelines:

  • Start with an 18-inch piece of ADA approved floss.
  • Form a C shape around each tooth.
  • Rub the floss against the tooth and up to remove any debris.
  • Repeat for each tooth, using a new section of floss.

3)   See Your Dentist Twice per Year

To avoid gum disease and large cavities that turn into dental emergencies, see the dentist for bi-annual check-ups and at least one cleaning per year. For children, fluoride treatments and sealants can be provided for additional protection. If you are involved in sports, the dentist can craft a professional mouth guard to protect your smile. A thorough routine dental exam includes the following:

  • X-rays
  • Intra-oral photos
  • Evaluation for decay, wear, TMJ, and early gum disease
  • Periodontal pocket-depth check
  • Oral Cancer Screening
  • Assessment of any spots or lesions in the mouth

4)   Eat Healthy Foods

Most foods that are good for your body are good for your teeth and gums. Avoid sweets and consider these nutritious snacks and beverages:

  • Milk, cheese, and yogurt
  • Lean Proteins
  • Fruits and Vegetables
  • Nuts and Legumes
  • Water

5)   Use a Mouth Rinse

Mouthwashes have come a long way and there is a range of products that can support ideal oral hygiene. Ask your dentist which of these he recommends to meet your unique needs:

  • Fluoride-Based
  • Antiseptic
  • Moisturizing

If you follow these steps you help ensure the health of your smile. If you experience a dental emergency be sure to get attention quickly to prevent a simple treatment from becoming an invasive procedure.

Call our Tracy Dental Office Today to Learn More

Corral Hollow Family Dental provides compassionate, comprehensive dental care for Tracy and nearby communities. We also welcome emergency dental patients.


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