Are you searching for ways to improve your oral hygiene habits so that you can reduce your risk for developing gingivitis and periodontal disease? Gingivitis and periodontal disease can cause swollen, bleeding gums, gum recession, jaw bone loss, loose teeth and oral infections. Our dentists in Melbourne and Vero Beach, FL can help you take better care of your teeth and gums so that you can improve the health of your mouth.

Tips for Proper Oral Hygiene and Good Gum Health

Proper oral hygiene and good gum health starts with finding the right products. Most individuals should choose a soft-bristled electric or manual toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes are beneficial for everyone, but they can especially help individuals who have problems angling their toothbrushes correctly and moving the toothbrush in a circular motion to remove all the food particles and plaque. When choosing toothpaste, it’s important to make sure it is ADA approved. Floss is available in many styles and thicknesses, including waxed and unwaxed floss, floss picks and flossers. It’s best to choose the one that’s easiest for you to use. If you have difficulty choosing the right oral hygiene products our Melbourne dentist can make recommendations.

1. Brush at Least Twice a Day

In order to keep your teeth and gums healthy, it is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day. For most people, that means brushing in the morning and in the evening before bed. However, you can also brush or rinse your teeth with mouthwash after you eat to help remove food particles. In fact, individuals with braces and aligners should also brush about 30 minutes after eating.

2. Floss Once a Day

In addition to brushing twice a day, everyone should floss their teeth once a day. Flossing removes food particles and plaque before it turns into tartar, which is a hard calcified substance that can only be removed with professional dental tools.

3. Eat the Right Foods

Your diet also plays an important role in your oral health. It is important to eat foods that are high in calcium and vitamin C as well as crunchy fruits and vegetables. Our dentist recommends eating plenty of apples, celery, cheese and yogurt to help maintain healthy teeth and gums.

4. Limit Sugary Foods

Maintaining oral health also involves limiting the amount of sugar you eat. Cakes, cookies, pies, candy, energy drinks and regular colas all contain tons of sugar, and the bad bacteria in your mouth love sugar. This means that every time you eat a cookie, you experience a bacteria explosion in your mouth. The rapid increase in bacteria leads to an extended acid attack on your teeth, which can weaken the enamel and lead to cavities.

5. Limit How Many Times Your Eat Per Day

If you snack all day, consider limiting the number of times you eat. Every time you put a piece of food in your mouth, it causes the bacteria to thrive and subjects the enamel of your teeth to an acid attack, which can last as long as 30 minutes. This means that if you eat a cookie every 30 minutes, your teeth will experience a near-constant acid attack, which can lead to the deterioration of your tooth enamel and oral health.

6. Get Dental Cleanings Every 6 to 12 Months

In addition to brushing, flossing and watching your diet, you should get professional dental cleanings from our dentists in Vero Beach and Melbourne, FL every six to 12 months. The frequency with which you need dental cleanings will depend on your at-home oral healthcare routine and whether you have any chronic diseases that could impact your gum health, like diabetes, high blood pressure and immune system problems. If you are unsure as to how often to visit our dentists for a routine cleaning, we can help you develop the right schedule according to your lifestyle.

To schedule an examination and teeth cleaning, call us at 772-569-9700.