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Take care of your teeth

Healthy teeth require a lifetime of care. Even if you’ve been told you have good teeth, it’s critical that you take the right steps every day to care for them and prevent problems. This means getting the right oral care products, as well as being aware of your daily habits.

1. Don’t go to bed without brushing your teeth

It is no secret that the general recommendation is to brush your teeth at least twice a day. However, many of us still neglect to brush our teeth at night. Laziness and sleepiness cannot be an excuse because brushing before bedtime removes germs and plaque that accumulate throughout the day and is the most effective gesture of the day to maintain our oral health.

2. Brush properly

The way you brush is equally important; in fact, brushing your teeth wrong is almost as bad as not brushing at all. Take your time, moving your toothbrush in gentle, circular motions to remove plaque. Unremoved plaque can harden, leading to tartar buildup and gingivitis (early gum disease).

3. Do not neglect your tongue

Plaque can also build up on the tongue. Not only can this result in a bad mouth odor, but it can lead to other oral health problems. Gently brush your tongue every time you brush your teeth.

4. Use the toothpaste recommended by your dentist.

When it comes to toothpaste, there are more important elements to look for than whitening power and flavors. Your dentist will recommend the one that has the composition your mouth needs at the moment.

For example, fluoride, which has been the subject of controversy by those concerned about its impact on other areas of health, is a substance that at certain times remains a pillar of oral health because it acts by fighting germs that can cause cavities, as well as providing a protective barrier for teeth.

5. Treat flossing as important as brushing

Many who brush their teeth regularly forget to floss. Flossing is not just for removing small bits of food that may be stuck between teeth, as one of our most hygienists points out, “It’s actually a way to stimulate the gums, reduce plaque and help lower inflammation in the area.”

Flossing once a day is usually enough to reap these benefits.

6. Don’t let flossing difficulties hold you back

Flossing can be difficult, especially for young children and our elders. Instead of giving up, look for tools to help you floss. For example, Dental Cleaners are like little bows with handles that are already threaded with floss and are easier to use and buying a dental irrigator with different heads for the whole family can make a difference.  

7. Consider mouthwash

Advertisements make mouthwash seem necessary for good oral health, but it’s important to ask your dentist if you really need it and, if so, to know exactly which one he or she prescribes. Dr. Miravé says mouthwash helps in three ways: it reduces the amount of acid in the mouth, cleans hard-to-brush areas in and around the gums, and remineralizes teeth. “Mouth rinses are useful as a supplemental tool,” she explains, “I think in children and older people, where the ability to brush and floss may not be ideal, a mouth rinse is especially helpful.”

Ask your dentist to recommend a specific mouthwash. Some brands are better for children and people with sensitive teeth.

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