Oral hygiene instructions are helpful and a form of essential educational information meant to teach and guide patients to prevent new cavities, and to maintain healthy teeth and gums. The initial oral hygiene visit involves the dentist instructing the patient on the proper methods of brushing and flossing. Follow up visits are conducted to further assess the patient’s progress in maintaining good oral health, and to help review and reinforce techniques of cleaning at home.
The following are helpful recommendations:
Brushing teeth twice a day is highly recommended, and it is important to make sure that this is done after a dental floss is used, as this is a more effective method of cleaning the teeth. The use of a soft bristled tooth brush (safer on your gums) and a circular motion that moves the brush bristles ‘away’ from the gums (on the top arch, this would mean you are brushing in a circular direction which is top-down; on the bottom arch, you would be brushing in a bottom-to-top circular motion. Care should be taken not to speed through brushing, taking at least 2-3 minutes to do a thorough job.
Flossing is the foundation for healthy gums, so it should be carried out at least once a day. Dental floss will get into areas between the teeth and under the gums where a regular toothbrush cannot. To use a floss, sliding motion is performed between the teeth and as soon as the floss slips below the two teeth, wrapping into a “C” shape around the base of the teeth and gently under the gumline helps to wipe the teeth from base to tip two or three times. It should be made sure to floss both sides of every tooth.
Eating a well-balanced diet, avoiding excessive snacking between meals, especially sticky, sugary foods plays a vital part in maintaining a proper hygiene that in turn prevents the disease from developing. Use of either a fluoride or antiseptic rinse as directed by the dentist or hygienist is a good way to support the other methods. Avoidance of smoking is highly advised as it can interfere with the regular metabolism and decrease the blood supply to the oral cavity. Twice-daily brushings and regular flossing are excellent for maintenance between office visits, but a healthy mouth and beautiful smile require routine general and preventive care to stay that way.
Our practice offers hygiene care that includes regular oral examinations and cleanings. Our preventive hygiene services include fluoride application, professional breath control, and periodontal (gum disease) treatments designed to help maintain the patient’s smile, oral health and beauty.