Taking care of your teeth is something we should all begin doing from a young age. Brushing our teeth, flossing, and using mouthwash are just a few of the many ways you can build good dental hygiene.
But what more can you do — or not do?
Crown Dental is here to offer you some advice when it comes to things your dentist wishes you knew…
What Your Dentist Wishes You Knew
- Flossing the day of your appointment will not make up for a year of skipping it. Hey, we’ve all been there. You wake up one morning, glance at your calendar and notice you have your annual cleaning coming up in two days. You decide to floss your teeth morning and night for those next two days to try and make up for the fact that you haven’t flossed since your last appointment. Your dentist will never know… right? Wrong! Your dentist will most definitely know. They can easily tell based on the buildup of plaque between your teeth or the inflammation of your gums. If adding flossing to your routine is tricky, try habit stacking – this is when you start to develop a new habit by adding it onto an already developed one. For example, you have the habit or most definitely should have the habit of brushing your teeth before you go to bed; by leaving your floss or floss sticks next to your toothbrush, you will start to remember to floss when you go to brush your teeth. Colgate also recommends using floss sticks to make flossing easier for yourself.
- You can brush your teeth too hard. Some people often think that the harder you brush, the cleaner your teeth will be. After all, you’re bound to get every bit of plaque off if you brush hard enough, and isn’t that a good thing? Getting rid of plaque is, but brushing too hard can cause your gum tissue to shrink back. Make sure you are using a toothbrush with soft bristles because medium or hard bristle brushes tend to be too abrasive.
- There is a wrong way to floss. Flossing is designed to clean between your teeth, it isn’t for your gums. You should try to avoid pulling straight down into your gums when flossing because doing this too much can cause damage to your gum tissue. Flossing too much can also do more harm than good. The American Dental Association recommends that you floss once a day.
- Your toothbrush has an expiration date. We’re all guilty of using a toothbrush a little longer than we should because as long as it doesn’t look like it needs to be thrown away, it’s still good — or is it? According to the CDC, you should change out your toothbrush every three to four months. Any longer than this and the bristles will begin to fray and won’t do their best job at clearing away plaque. Not to mention, using a toothbrush for too long can lead to bacteria and infections.
- You should see your dentist at least once a year. While we know you are doing everything you can to take care of your oral hygiene, it is important to check in with your dentist for a cleaning ideally every six months, but at least once a year. This ensures that you have a trained professional checking in on your teeth. Dentists are trained to seek out early signs of tooth decay and gum disease, so even if you don’t see a problem, they will! It’s also important to get a good cleaning, especially by a dentist, who can really get into those hard to reach areas in your mouth.
And as always, Crown Dental is here to help with all your dental needs and conveniently located at 61 Amherst St, Nashua, NH 03064. Give us a call today to book your next cleaning!