Visits to the dentist may not be something we always put at the top of our ‘to-do’ lists but there’s no denying that silky smooth, tartar and plaque free feeling just after your scale and clean is amazing. Wouldn’t it be nice to keep that feeling going all year round?
The fact is, your six monthly check-up and professional cleaning is important but it can’t replace looking after your teeth at home the other 363 days a year, so here are some of our best tips for how you can keep that ‘just dentist cleaned’ feeling going all year long.
1. Eliminate nasty bacteria: FACT = we all have bacteria in our mouths. Brushing twice a day, flossing, tongue scraping and rinsing are all aimed at keeping levels of the nasty ones down. In particular, most cases of bad breath are caused by bacteria living between the teeth and on the surface of your tongue. Flossing and tongue-scraping can make a big difference. On top of this, your will be preventing cavities and gum disease.
2. Have a game plan for brushing and take the full two minutes. if you have a system where you start from the back tooth on one side, and move around the mouth to the back tooth on the other side, doing this for the insides, outsides and biting parts of your teeth, top and then bottom teeth, you are less likely to miss places and do a better job.
3. Clean between your teeth. Floss, or use interdental brushes. By only brushing, even with an electric toothbrush, you are missing the proximal or ‘in-between’ surfaces of your teeth and these places are never getting cleaned! Picture your shower if you never scrubbed it…
4. Rinsing does not eliminate the need for flossing, despite what marketing claims are made. Rinses can lower bacterial growth but do not adequately remove the plaque from between the teeth. Going back to the shower analogy, using mouthwash and never flossing is like washing down the walls but never scrubbing them.
5. Regular check-ups and professional cleaning with your dentist actually saves you money. A small problem picked up early is easier and less costly to fix than a big painful one. Most dental disease is not painful until it becomes really serious and it isn’t easy to see into a mouth yourself. We use magnification, bright light and specialized tools at Pelago Dental to check all areas of your mouth and teeth properly and clean those tricky areas that are hard for even the best tooth-brusher to reach.
6. White teeth aren’t always healthy teeth. Everybody’s teeth are different shades of yellow white and grey. Just because your teeth aren’t as white as somebody else’s, doesn’t mean they are unhealthy, and likewise some people have bright white teeth but still get cavities between them…
7. Lay off the fizzy drinks, even soda water. We all know the sugar in soft drinks is bad for our teeth, but these drinks are also highly acidic and can erode the enamel off your teeth. The same goes for plain soda water and even so called ‘healthy’ infused water. They may not contain sugar but are still acidic and can cause acid wear of the teeth.
8. A good dentist is a thorough dentist. This means not just looking at the teeth but also checking the jaw joint, muscles, soft tissues in and around your mouth for any suspicious lumps and bumps, and performing a screening for gum disease. Rest assured that this is always part of the process when you visit us for your examination appointment at Pelago Dental
9. Dentures are not inevitable and also not an end to dental problems. The idea of ‘taking them all out and having falsies’ is not the end to dental maintenance, and in most cases also not the end to mouth problems. Dentures can be a great way to replace missing teeth, but keeping your own is always the best; even the most well-made denture will never feel exactly the same as natural teeth. Also, just because your mother, your grand-mother and her great grand-mother before her all had dentures does not mean you have to. Your future is not determined by your history, you can make a change and decide what happens to your teeth by how well you look after them. We are here to help you.
10. Lastly,there are so many great products on the market now to help keep your teeth and gums healthy – with electric toothbrushes, floss on a handle, interdental brushes, air flossers and tongue scrapers it is hard to have an excuse not to keep your mouth healthy these days!
Is it time your came in for a check-up and cleaning? Or do you just have questions or need advice about the best way to look after your mouth and teeth? Call us on (08) 9185 4849 and we will be more than happy to help!