Maintaining a Healthy Smile
The easiest and most important thing you can do to protect your oral health is brush and floss your teeth every day. More specifically, you should brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes at a time and floss at least once.
By sticking to a strict oral care regimen, you’ll keep your mouth free of bacteria that can result in tooth decay and gum disease, eventually leading to tooth loss. When you combine daily brushing and flossing with regular visits to Dr. Cooper and Dr. Pham, you have all the tools you need to keep your smile healthy and beautiful for a lifetime.
How to Brush Your Teeth
The next time you brush your teeth, keep this five-step model from Dr. Cooper and Dr. Pham in mind to determine if you’re brushing thoroughly enough:
- Hold the bristles along your gum line at a 45 degree angle. Brush gently along the outer and inner surfaces of your teeth in a circular motion.
- Brush each of your teeth individually. Tilt your brush vertically and use the same circular motion to clean behind your front teeth.
- Brush gently back and forth over the biting surface of your teeth.
- Gently brush your tongue and gums to remove bacteria, taking care to not brush too aggressively.
- Rinse your mouth out with water to remove toothpaste and any lingering bacteria. It’s also a good idea to finish your oral care regimen by using an antibacterial mouthwash.
How to Floss
Often neglected, flossing is just as important to your health as brushing your teeth. Follow these simple instructions for proper flossing:
- Break off roughly 18 inches of floss, winding some of it around each of your middle fingers.
- Shorten the length of floss between your middle fingers to six inches and hold it tightly between your thumbs and index fingers.
- Gently guide the floss between your teeth and gums, curving it into a C shape against each tooth.
- Rub the floss vertically against the sides of your teeth to clean them.
- As you clean, wind the used floss around your first middle finger and extend new floss to your next tooth.