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The Ultimate Guide to Oral Health

THE ULTIMATE guide to ORAL HEALTH We've been lectured about daily brushing and flossing since grade school, but are those the only habits necessary to keep a healthy mouth? Oral health is a key factor in maintaining overall wellness. Long-term good hygiene habits keep pearly whites sparkling, bad breath in check, and prevent more painful issues from surfacing in the first place. Grab the Right Gear TOOTHBRUSH TOOTHPASTE • Contain abrasives and detergents to reduce plaque and surface stains. Some have ingredients to help strengthen enamel, or reduce plaque, gingivitis, tartar, sensitivity, or bad breath. • Choose a brush with a medium sized head (about V½ an inch wide and 1 inch long). • Soft bristles help avoid damage to the gums and enamel (the thin outer covering of the tooth). • "Natural" toothpastes have fewer chemicals (like added colors and flavors). • Toss brushes when the bristles start to fray (usually every two or three months) or after you've been sick. • Have sensitive teeth? Try a paste with desensitizing agents, which help stop sensations (like extreme heat or cold) from reaching the tooth's nerve. MOUTHWASH FLOSS • 30 seconds of an antibacterial • For tight-fitting teeth: Use waxed floss, which easily glides into small spaces rinse can kill the bacteria along the gum line that cause gingivitis. WASH AWAY • For wider spaced teeth: Use tape-style or regular un-waxed floss. FLOSS • The ADA doesn't actually recommend using mouthwash, but it does recognize the health benefits of doing so. • Not a fan of the floss? Try using a flossing pick. WHITENING FLUORIDE • The best way to whiten: • Fluoride protects teeth from being broken down by acids when sugars in food combine with saliva. It can Go to the dentist for a professional treatment. Flouride • For less intensive whitening: Try a commercial whitening kit at home (with either bleaching gels and trays or strips). also help rebuild weak areas of the teeth. Rinse • A version of fluoride can be added to town water supplies to strengthen the teeth of those who drink it. • Bleaching can irritate teeth and gums, so be careful with the strong stuff. According to the ADA, 74% of public water systems in the United States provide fluorinated water. • Whitening toothpastes can help, but are not as long lasting. • Fluoride can also be found naturally in foods like meat, fish, eggs, and tea leaves. • Because all toothpastes contain abrasives (which help whiten), the best way to get whiter teeth for life is to brush and floss regularly! • Fluoride is very important for children, but adults also need it to protect against cavities and decay. the controversy on FLUORIDE If ingested in very large amounts, like swallowing a whole container of mouthwash, fluoride is toxic. Parents should be careful about storing fluorinated dental products away from children and supervising tooth brushing. Using too much can cause fluorosis, where dental enamel developing under the gums is damaged, causing discoloration, pitting, and white lines on teeth. Your Daily Routine How Often? The How & Why Move bristles in a small, circular motion to avoid damage to gums and enamel. Be sure to cover the front and back, inside and outside, up and down, and the flat parts, too! Brushing The ADA recommends two, 2-minute sessions per day. esn't promote tongue-brushing specifically, but if you breath is persistently stinky, consider brushing your tongue twice a day. Brushing or scraping the tongue can help remove bacteria that cause bad breath. If bad breath hangs around, head to the dentist - it can be a symptom ADA Tongue of more serious health conditions . ........... . Floss before bed to remove a whole day's worth of plaque. Don't forget that hard-to-reach spot behind the back molars! Flossing Once per day. FLOSS Using a rinse after brushing washes out bacteria that can It ain't a replacement for brushing or flossing, so ask your dentist if you should add mouthwash into your cause cavities and gum disease. The fluoride in mouthwash strengthens enamel and makes teeth more resistant to decay. Mouthwash Wash routine. Anytime – just make sure it's the sugar-free variety, or look for the ADA Seal. Chewing activates saliva production, which serves as a buffer against harsh food acids and can help teeth rebuild enamel. Gum Going to the Dentist Two visits per year to the dental chair fits the bill for most people. Smokers, diabetics, or people with chronic dental conditions (gingivitis, lots of cavities, etc.) might need to schedule appointments more often. Regardless of dental history, make a date with your dentist if you feel pain or anything out of the ordinary. What to Expect 2 Checking teeth for cavities and decay with metal "explorer" tool Visual check with nickel-sized mirror including counting those chompers and looking at gums 3 Deep cleaning with metal hand instruments to remove tartar, polishing using a rotating rubber cup or brush with toothpaste that includes an abrasive and fluoride 6 Discussion of 4 Fluoride treatment at-home treatments or tips on how to improve your daily X-rays if the dentist needs to evaluate or diagnose an oral disease or condition (Say cheese!) routine How to Choose a Dentist Look for a clean, neat, and organized establishment that is upfront about information like past dental history, payments, and appointments. Ask questions -a good dentist will always explain a treatment or diagnosis. Bonus points for members of the American Dental Association (ADA). These dentists and hygienists adhere to the ADA Principles of Ethics and Code of Professional Conduct. DEALING WITH FEAR We know, we know. Visiting the dentist isn't always so pleasant (and can be really scary). But there are some things we can to do make those visits a bit more enjoyable. Here are some tips from Dr. Steven Goldberg, inventor of the DentalVibe Injection Comfort System. Dental fear usually stems from a previous painful experience or reports from friends or pop culture. Many of The mouth is the gateway to the rest of the body. An oral infection or disease can easily spread beyond the mouth. cardiovascular disease these negative stereotypes originated a long time ago, when dental technology was much more rudimentary. osteoporosis premature birth So, how should we ditch the fear? Instead of worrying about pain before the exam even starts, try to visualize a positive experience while waiting in the reception area. Arrange a time to meet the dentist before any CUISINE Meat ith D. 62.30 treatment to discuss the procedure and any fears. Knowledge is power! Bring some tunes to drown out potentially scary noises (like the drill). Most dentists don't mind (and even During the actual exam, remember to breathe deeply. Keep a pleasant experience or place in mind to stay calm. encourage) cranking up the volume. Ready to make some oral health changes? Here are some great apps to help with everything from remembering to floss to scheduling dentist appointments. Dent De brush em icadis Smile App See what you'd look like with a Brush 'Em Foar of Dontists - Dontal Export A go-to guide to understanding what's going on in your mouth! ZocDoc - Doctor Phobia Troatment Appointments Online Find and book dentist (or doctor) appointments in three easy steps. Shows you how long Uses visualization and mind-mapping technologies to help combat dental fear. to brush each sec- brighter smile. tion of your mouth. Great for patchy brushers! Greatist Sources • lid508510495?mt-8&ls-1 • ment/id479054469?mt-8 • • http://health.howstuff- • http://www.medical- • tal_check-up.aspx • • sources/pdfs/patient 33.pdf • • http://ww- • cles/Oral-and-Dental-Health-Basics/Oral-Hygiene/Oral-Hygiene-Basics/article/Choosing the-Right-Toothbrush.c vsp electric-and-dis- posable • Oral-and-Dental-Health-Ba- sics/Checkups-and-Dental-Procedures/The-Dental-Visit/artide/How-Often- Should You-Go-to-the- Dentist.cvsp • des/the-impact-of-sugarfree-gum-on-oral-health/index.htm • Over- view_of_Sugarfree_Gum.pdf • • /living-green/- natural-toothpaste-ingredients-0307 • -1#.UHMVA_MDQEN • • fluoridation/safety/dental_fluorosis.htm • • pdf • http://w- ADA American Dental Association" lemon ly Created by Squeeky Clean

The Ultimate Guide to Oral Health

shared by greatist on Nov 06
1 comment
Good oral health goes far beyond brushing. Here’s everything you need to know to keep your mouth clean, healthy, and pearly white.




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