Creating Your Oral Health Plan
Posted on 11/29/2012 by Tigard Family Dental
|"At Tigard Family Dental, we remain committed to helping our patients achieve the very best oral health possible. Richard A. McKinney, DMD and our friendly and professional staff make every effort to help their patients maintain the health of their teeth and gums. Both doctors stress the importance of brushing and flossing daily to patients, as preventative dental care rates as the best way to avoid such oral health problems as tooth decay and gum disease.
While brushing and flossing, along with scheduling regular checkups at Tigard Family Dental, help to prevent oral health problems, there are additional steps you should take to keep your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime. Tigard dentist, Richard A. McKinney, DMD, recommend patients consider these helpful points.
Understand Your Own Needs
Like a snowflake, no two mouths require exactly the same kind of oral care treatments. Special conditions that exist within your mouth and certain medical and health issues can require you to receive special care to prevent the onset of any oral health concerns. For example, conditions such as pregnancy, heart disease, braces, diabetes, and cancer treatments may necessitate a change in how you care for your teeth. By discussing the state of your oral health with Richard A. McKinney, DMD, you can gain a better understanding of what steps you need to take daily to protect your oral health.
Create and Follow a Routine
Once you have established the state of your oral health through discussions with our doctors, you can begin to establish an easy to follow daily oral health routine. Make sure you thoroughly understand any special instructions about maintaining your oral health given to you by Richard A. McKinney, DMD prior to starting your routine. After creating a routine, it's important that you make every effort to stick to it daily so your oral health doesn't suffer.
Fan of Fluoride
Fluoride benefits both children and adults by strengthening developing teeth and preventing tooth decay. While already added to our nation's water supply, your teeth can never get enough fluoride, so it's also advisable to use toothpaste and mouthwashes that also contain the additive. Some patients may also need to intake more fluoride than others, so make sure to ask the doctors if your getting enough during your next visit.
Brush and Floss Daily
A important enough part of your oral health that it's worth mentioning twice, brushing and flossing daily is the only way to ensure healthy teeth and gums regardless if you're one or 100. Brushing helps to remove harmful plaque from your teeth and any lingering food particles that remain after eating. Flossing helps to remove food that gets stuck between teeth, which can contribute to bad breath and tooth decay.
Limit Snacking and Eat a Balanced Diet
What you eat has an enormous impact on the health of your teeth and gums. Diets high in sugar provide plaque the fuel it needs to produce acids that can damage the health of your teeth's enamel. Given enough time, these plaque acids create tiny holes in your teeth where bacteria can accumulate. This bacteria can cause an infection, which leads to gum disease, tooth decay, and potentially tooth loss. By eating a healthy, balanced diet, you remove excess sugar and provide plaque with less acid producing fuel.
Saliva works as a natural defense mechanism by neutralizing the harmful effects of plaque acids. When you eat a meal, your mouth produces additional saliva that helps to wash away plaque acids and any lingering food particles that might remain. However, your mouth produces much less saliva when you snack. With less saliva, your mouth can't protect itself as well, and plaque acids can do more damage to the health of your teeth than following a large meal.
If you have any questions about the best way to protect the health of your teeth and gums, please feel free to ask any member of the Tigard Family Dental staff. We'd be happy to help.