A beautiful, healthy smile that lasts a lifetime is our ultimate goal when treating patients. Your personal home care plays an important role in achieving that goal. Your personal home care starts by eating balanced meals, reducing the number of snacks you eat, and correctly using the various dental aids that help control the plaque and bacteria that cause dental disease.
Tooth brushing – Brush your teeth at least twice a day (especially before going to bed at night) with an ADA approved soft bristle brush and toothpaste.
Place the brush at a 45 degree angle to the gums and gently brush using a small, circular motion, ensuring that you always feel the bristles on the gums.
Brush the outer, inner, and biting surfaces of each tooth.
Use the tip of the brush to clean the inside of the front teeth.
Brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.
Brush for at least 2 full minutes each time you brush. This allows for enough time for you to brush every possible surface of each tooth, but also allows the fluoride in the toothpaste enough time to strengthen the enamel of your teeth.
Eugene Dental Group recommends electric toothbrushes. Both the Oral-B and Sonicare brushes are excellent. They are easy to use and can remove plaque more efficiently than you can. They also lessen the chances of you brushing improperly and damaging your gums or teeth. Simply place the bristles of the electric brush on your gums and teeth and guide the brush slowly around each surface of every tooth.
Toothpaste - A fluoride-containing toothpaste is always recommended. Fluoride helps to strengthen the enamel of your teeth, helping to prevent decay. Without fluoride, teeth can decay at a much faster rate. For patients with a high-decay rate or with many dental restorations, we will often recommend a prescription fluoride toothpaste, Fluoridex, to help reduce the risk of decay.
Fluoridex Instructions - Brush with a pea-sized amount as you normally would with your regular toothpaste, for at least 2 minutes. Spit the excess toothpaste out, but do not rinse your mouth with anything. Your teeth will feel like they still have a film of toothpaste left on them - that will allow the fluoride more time to protect the teeth. Do not rinse, eat or drink anything for at least 1 hour after brushing with Fluoridex.
Flossing – Daily flossing is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gumline. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces, it disrupts plaque colonies from building up, preventing damage to the gums, teeth, and bone.
Take 12-16 inches (30-40cm) of dental floss and wrap it around your middle fingers, leaving about 2 inches (5cm) of floss between the hands.
Using your thumbs and forefingers to guide the floss, gently insert the floss between teeth using a sawing motion.
Curve the floss into a “C” shape around each tooth and under the gumline. Gently move the floss up and down, cleaning the side of each tooth.
Floss holders are recommended only if you have difficulty using conventional floss.
Rinsing – It is important to rinse your mouth with water after meals if you are unable to brush. If you are using an over-the-counter product for rinsing, it’s a good idea to consult with your dentist or dental hygienist on its appropriateness for you.
Xylitol Products - Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that has been found to reduce the level of decay-causing bacteria in saliva. There are many xylitol-containing products you can try: