Maybe you’ve heard it said that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. When it comes to dentistry, this couldn’t be more true. This is because dental problems are exponentially more painful and difficult to address the longer they are left untreated. Preventing them from occurring in the first place is always the preferred option!
Preventive dentistry refers to the daily care and dental procedures used to maintain healthy teeth. The two major causes of tooth loss are decay and gum disease. When you and your dental provider work together to protect your teeth from these problems, this can prevent the need for treatment. Daily maintenance is key to ensuring you’ll have clean, healthy teeth for years to come!
Check out these three preventive dental options for tips on keeping your teeth strong:
Fluoride: The outer surface of the teeth, known as enamel, is packed with mineral crystals. Each day, these minerals are lost or gained. Remineralization refers to the process whereby fluoride, calcium, and phosphate are deposited back into the enamel.
Fluoride plays a particular role in concentrating calcium and phosphate, therefore strengthening the structure of the teeth. That’s why the use of fluoride is one of the most effective measures in the prevention of dental caries. Fluoride can halt and even reverse the development of dental decay. Many people are naturally exposed to fluoride in their drinking water, and it is added to most toothpaste. At the dentist’s office, you may be offered an intensive fluoride treatment if you have been diagnosed with dental caries.
Brushing:We advise patients to brush their teeth every twelve hours. The most important time to brush is right before bed. When you don’t go to bed with clean teeth, bacteria are free to do as much damage as they can during all the hours you’re asleep.
Using the right brushing technique will make an enormous difference to your oral health. Be sure to brush all surfaces of the teeth and include the gums and tongue. Holding the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle, gently move the brush back and forth where the teeth meet the gums. Then, move it up and down against the teeth on the inside and outside surfaces. When cleaning the inside surface of the top and bottom front teeth, tilt the brush until it is almost vertical and move the brush up and down along the length of each tooth.
These techniques can help you to hit hard-to-reach spots to prevent cavities from forming. Also, don’t forget to replace the toothbrush every two to three months!
Flossing: Many people take the time to brush their teeth regularly but don’t give the same importance to flossing. This is a mistake. Without flossing, bacteria can settle in the gaps between the teeth. Even if it seems like your flossing isn’t accomplishing anything, that’s not the case. Each time you floss, you’re removing bacteria from between the teeth so that it cannot accumulate on the gums. Flossing is the single best way to protect against gum disease, which is the top cause of tooth loss.
The two main things to keep in mind about flossing are that you should:
If you have questions, you can learn more about proper flossing techniques with us at your next dental appointment.
Your annual or biannual visit to the dentist has a vital part to play in the prevention of dental caries, gum disease, and other oral conditions. At each visit, you’ll receive a comprehensive cleaning from a dental hygienist. This cleaning serves to disrupt the bacteria that gathers on the teeth and gums so that they can’t do further damage. You’ll also benefit from oral screenings, which allow the dentist to detect and treat incipient conditions before they become serious.
To schedule a preventive family dentistry appointment at a discounted rate, please contact PDFP at 215-898-7337 today!