Tips for Dental Hygiene and Healthy Teeth

October is National Dental Hygiene month! RRH is dedicating this month to promoting healthy mouths and celebrating the hard work your dental hygienist does to keep your teeth clean. That's why, Dental Hygienist, Jennifer Tuttle is sharing some key daily habits that promote healthy teeth and gums. We can observe the month (and beyond) by:

1. Brushing: The American Dental Hygiene Association recommends using a soft toothbrush.  Brush twice a day and use toothpaste containing fluoride.  Toothpastes containing fluoride help prevent cavities.  Brushing regularly with a fluoridated toothpaste can help strengthen weak spots and exposed roots, and help prevent the early stages of tooth decay.  Don’t forget to brush your tongue too!  It will remove bacteria and as a bonus, fresher breath!

2. Flossing:  Even though there may be some controversy around flossing, flossing is something that you should be doing daily.  There are just some stuff that a toothbrush cannot get. Particles and bacteria can do damage to the teeth and gums if not removed between your teeth. 

3. Rinse:  Use an antimicrobial mouthwash.  Mouthwash can help remove debris and get rid of any additional bacteria that was not previously removed.  This is not to replace brushing and flossing, but an addition to your oral health care routine. 

4. Eating Healthy:  A healthy diet promotes good oral health by cutting down on sugars.  Sugars can contribute to increased caries.  

5. Chew sugar-free gum: Research has shown that chewing sugar-free gum after eating a meal helps to clean debris from teeth and promote saliva production which helps to neutralize the acid buildup.  Chewing gum with Mannitol, Sorbitol, or Xylitol have sweeteners that do not cause cavities! 

It is important to remember that good oral health is the foundation for overall well-being.  Healthy mouth, healthy body!  When in doubt, remember the adage: “You don’t have to brush all your teeth, just the ones you want to keep.”