Properly brushing and flossing every day, twice a day is necessary for a healthy smile, but it is not a substitute for professional cleanings. Only professional cleanings by your dentist or dental hygienist can remove plaque buildup that leads to gum disease. The most effective way to ensure the health of your teeth and gums is to come in for your routine cleanings.
A cleaning is a simple treatment that preserves your oral health and prevents potential damage from bacteria. The American Dental Association recommends coming in for a dental cleaning every 6 months. However, patients who are more prone to gingivitis are recommended to come in more often, every three to four months, to prevent infections. This is also recommended for patients with dental implants. A cleaning is not just for the purpose of removing build up and plaque. During your appointment your dentist will also do a full oral examination to check for signs of cavities and more serious dental issues, even oral cancers.
Patients should brush their teeth at minimum twice a day for two minutes with fluoride toothpaste. It is also recommended that you floss at least once every day. Your toothbrush should have soft bristles and be replaced every three to four months, or more frequently if your toothbrush is visibly damaged or the bristles are fraying. The American Dental Association states that both manual and electric toothbrushes can be effective.
There are a number of methods for effective brushing. Our dental hygienist can show you these techniques at your next appointment.