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How to Care for Your Teeth at Home

dental hygiene owings mills

A dental visit is a great way to get clean teeth, but only comes a few times per year. Many people worry that what they are doing to care for their teeth the rest of the year just isn’t enough. So what can you do? Here are some tips about what you can do to give your teeth the best care possible every day.

Choose the Right Products

The basis of any home oral health routine is what you use. Unfortunately, when you go to the store the products can be overwhelming. So what do you use?

Toothbrush

Be sure to choose a soft-bristled brush. This should be enough to clean your teeth without damaging the enamel or your gumline. A brush with stiffer bristles can even cause your gums to recede.

Toothpaste

The most important things to look for in a toothpaste are fluoride – at least 1000 parts per million – and a seal of approval from the American Dental Association. Anything else – flavor, special features such as whitening – is up to you.

Floss

The biggest deciding factor in what floss you use is the amount of space between your teeth. If your teeth are very widely set, choose a thick floss or even a dental tape. If your teeth are very tight, choose a thin floss.

Mouthwash

Look for an alcohol-based mouthwash with fluoride. This is the best choice for killing bacteria and fighting off tooth decay.

Brush Regularly

You’ve probably heard this one from your dentist time and again. For most people, dentists recommend brushing twice a day – once in the morning and once in the evening. If possible, however, it is best to brush your teeth after every meal. Tooth decay is ultimately caused by bacteria and food particles sitting on the teeth, so it is best to remove them as soon as possible.

Chew Sugar-Free Gum

This is one you might not have heard of before: chewing gum after meals can actually help clean teeth. Sometimes it isn’t convenient to brush your teeth every time you eat. For those instances, gum can be a great choice. It’s no replacement for brushing, but chewing gum can pull food particles off the surface of the teeth and even stimulate saliva production to wash out your mouth. Make sure to choose a sugar-free gum – sugar just causes tooth decay. Xylitol is a popular non-sugar sweetener option.

Eat the Right Foods

Everyone knows that sugary foods are bad for you, but what about foods that are good? Calcium-rich dairy is always a great choice for building strong teeth and bones. Leafy greens also have minerals and nutrients that are vital for healthy teeth. Even though they are sweet, some fruits such as apples can actually help clean the teeth. Their crunchy texture scrapes food particles off the teeth, and they stimulate saliva production for cleaner teeth.

Schedule Regular Dental Appointments

The best thing you can do for your teeth is to keep any serious dental problems at bay, and treat them promptly if they do arise. This is hard for anyone to do at home, so you should always be sure to make regular dental appointments. Once every six months is enough for most people. When you visit, we can keep an eye out for any problems and treat them before small concerns become good ones. Our trained hygienists and specialized tools can also do more to clean your teeth than would ever be possible at home.

If you are looking for a dental care provider in the DMV, consider Dr. Ed Lazer at Cosmetic & Advanced Dentistry in Baltimore, MD. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or at (410) 697-6290 today.