October marks the annual National Dental Hygiene Month (NDHM). During NDHM, we would like to stress the importance of good oral health and doing The Daily 4.
The Daily 4
It is important to maintain a regular oral health routine. The Daily 4 breaks that routine into four easy steps that can be followed by anyone to maintain a happy and healthy smile.
Everyone should brush for two minutes, twice a day. This helps to remove biofilm and prevent cavities, gingivitis, and other biofilm-related diseases. You should maintain a 45-degree angle when brushing along the gums and use a circular motion that brushes from the gumline to the bottom of the teeth. Focus on 2-3 teeth at a time for about three seconds for each group, then move on to the next group of 2-3 teeth.
Flossing is an interdental cleaning technique that removes biofilm and food particles that a toothbrush can’t reach. Neglecting these hard to clean areas of the tooth can lead to tooth decay and periodontal disease. The proper technique for flossing is to wrap about 18 inches of dental floss between your two middle fingers, then hold about an inch taut between your thumb and index fingers and gently guide the floss between each tooth.
Your teeth make up less than half of the area in your mouth. Rinsing with antimicrobial mouthwash is important to clean the areas of your mouth that brushing and flossing don’t reach. To use, swish the mouthwash in your mouth for a full 30 seconds, then gargle before spitting out. You can also help prevent tooth decay by rinsing with water throughout the day after eating or drinking acidic or sugary drinks.
Chewing sugarless gum between brushings helps to keep your mouth clean throughout the day. Chewing sugarless gum stimulates saliva production, which helps to wash away biofilm, acids, and food particles from your mouth. Some research has also shown that chewing gum in between meals can help restore tooth enamel and decrease the risk of tooth decay.
A regular dental hygiene routine can help to maintain a healthy mouth, but it is important to remember that regular checkups and cleanings are vital to your oral health. Contact Aesthetic Family Dentistry at our Port Jervis office to schedule a checkup by calling (845) 610-6730 or request an appointment online.