414 NORTH CAMDEN DRIVE, SUITE 940 . BEVERLY HILLS, CA 90210 - PH. 310.273.0111
Monday, January 7, 2008
What you should know
Brushing, flossing and regular checkups are keys to good dental health. Daily brushing and flossing at home are cost-effective ways to avoid expensive repairs by a dentist later.
Plaque is the sticky mixture of bacteria and food that can lead to bad breath and ugly yellow stains on your teeth.
Your toothbrush cannot reach certain areas of your mouth. It is important to use floss to remove food particles and plaque between teeth and under your gums.
Plaque and trapped food can lead to inflamed, sensitive or receding gums. Healthy gums hold your teeth in place.
The bacteria in your mouth combine with sugars and starches you eat to make acid. The acid can attack the enamel of your teeth, leading to cavities. Many mouth rinses and toothpastes reduce the bacteria in plaque.
Effective brushing and flossing is critical to remove plaque. You need to remove plaque before it hardens on your teeth and around your gums. Hardened plaque is called tartar (also called calculus).
Tartar-control pastes can prevent the buildup of hard plaque on teeth. A professional hygienist or dentist should remove tartar after it has formed.
Fluoride is an important toothpaste ingredient. Fluoride strengthens teeth. Gels, pastes or powders can all be effective toothpastes.
Your toothbrush should be a soft, rounded-end nylon bristle brush. The bristles should not be frayed or bent.
Sugar-free gum can be a good way to keep your teeth clean and mouth moist when you travel. Sugary gum and between-meal snacks are bad for your teeth.
Bleeding gums are a sign of poor gum health. However, a few weeks of regular flossing and brushing can reduce bleeding gums.
Some cavities are hard to detect, especially those between the teeth. Sometimes, only bitewing X-rays can identify them. This is one reason why regular checkups with a dentist are so important.
What you should do
Make and keep a promise to yourself: "I will floss at least once a day. I won't just brush by teeth."
Avoid having sugar stay in your mouth for long periods of time. Stay away from gooey candy, snacks, and sugary gum and drinks. Rinse your mouth with water after eating such foods.
Get your dental checkups. Have regular cleanings to remove tartar. Have X-rays to check for tooth problems.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Develop a habit of brushing before bedtime and after breakfast. Clean your mouth after snacks and lunch. Rinse your mouth with water when you get a chance to prevent plaque buildup.
Brush correctly. Brush lightly for at least two minutes. Brushing too hard can make your gums recede.
Brush every tooth including the backside of teeth and back ones. Brush away from your gums. Brush your tongue.
Use toothpaste that contains fluoride. Don't use a lot of toothpaste or swallow it. Use toothpaste for sensitive teeth if teeth hurt after cold, sweet or sour foods. See your dentist for chronic problems.
Floss between your teeth daily. Floss more often if you have teeth that tend to trap food. Take enough time to floss between each tooth and up into the space between each tooth and the gum.
It does not matter whether you brush first or floss first. Just do a thorough job with both tasks.
Replace your toothbrush every three or four months.
Learn if you are doing a good job with brushing and flossing. Ask your dentist or hygienist. You can also buy tablets at a drugstore to stain plaque. The red stained plaque can show you spots that need additional cleaning.
Eat a balanced diet and plenty of calcium. A healthy diet, including fruits and vegetables, provide nutrients needed to maintain healthy gums and teeth.
Your children's teeth
Don't let a baby fall asleep with a bottle of juice or milk. Sugary liquids can stay on teeth while the baby sleeps, leading to cavities. Rub a clean, damp, washcloth along the baby's upper and lower gums at least two times a day.
Help small children brush and floss.
Make sure children have regular visits to the dentist. The dentist can check how the child's mouth is developing.
Pay special attention to the care of teen teeth. Teens often eat snacks and drink sugary sodas at odd hours. Their mouths can become crowded with permanent and wisdom teeth, creating the need for careful flossing. Oral hygiene is important to avoid bad breath and tooth decay. Sometimes tooth removal and braces are needed.
For more information
Go to Healthymemphis.org/links for Web links on tips about self-care of teeth and gums.
Family Health...Take Charge! is provided by the Healthy Memphis Common Table: healthymemphis.org. This article supports the care and advice of your doctor. Talk to your care provider about any health condition or before starting new treatments.
Only a proper examination can determine what is best for you. If you have any questions, or would like to schedule an introductory visit, please contact us.
The professional team working at the Beverly Hills Dental Spa is one of the best, most highly trained dental teams in the world. Dr. Berland selects his team members based upon experience, skill, education, training, and personality
458 N. Rexford Dr.
Beverly Hills CA US