Your best line of defense against cavities, gum disease, and damaged teeth is relatively simple and straightforward. It doesn’t take expensive equipment or anything out of the ordinary to do. However, it takes a little bit of time and attention to detail. The alternative is expensive dental work and, eventually, the need to replace your natural teeth. While injuries and unexpected trauma to the mouth can happen, resulting in the need for a root canal or other oral surgery, by following a handful of simple dental habits, you will help save your natural teeth and save money in your pocketbook as well.
Brush and Floss
Here are the basics, but it’s worth bringing up again. You need to brush at least twice a day, both morning and night, and floss at least once a day (if not twice). This will help remove bacteria from your mouth and prevent plaque from forming. Flossing will clear away food particles that stick between teeth which can lead to the development of cavities (and, at the very least, bad breath).
There are all kinds of toothpaste out there to choose from. Your general dentist can recommend a particular kind based on any particular oral care needs you might have. There’s toothpaste for whitening, for sensitive gums, to help remove certain kinds of stains (such as from coffee and wine consumption), just to name a few. Whatever toothpaste you go with, make sure to brush at least once in the morning and the evening. And there’s nothing wrong with brushing after lunch as well. This is your first and best line of defense.
Replace Your Toothbrush
When did you last replace your toothbrush? You should swap it out every 90 days. Bristles become flat and lifeless over time, reducing the quality of brushing. Overused brushes will not work in between your teeth, and a new toothbrush opens up potential cavities and dental problems.
If you have an electric toothbrush, you should replace the brush head every 90 days, and if you use a manual brush, you need to trash it and replace it at the same intervals. Your dentist can also recommend what kind of bristles you should be using. For many, firm bristles are too hard and will actually damage and aggravate the gumline. Medium to soft bristles might be better in this instance, but again, during your next visit to your dentist, ask what kind of toothbrush they recommend for maximum oral care.
Regular Cleaning Visits
Speaking of your general dentist, you need to schedule a regular cleaning and check-up every six months. Professional dental cleanings are especially helpful in protecting your teeth. Even with regular brushing, there likely will be some level of plaque buildup around your teeth that needs to be cleaned away. By going in to see your dentist every six months, the calculus can be cleaned up, giving you an especially clean feeling (and tasting) mouth. There’s nothing like the feeling of a freshly cleaned mouth because it likely will be the cleanest your mouth has been since your previous visit.
Additionally, by scheduling a visit every six months, your dentist can inspect your teeth to see if there are any cavities or areas of concern. They can also recommend any particular changes to your daily cleaning regimen, should it prove necessary.
Don’t Put Off Special Care
Perhaps you went to see your general dentist, and they told you it is important to have a cavity filled. Don’t put this off. A cavity is only going to grow worse over time. Eventually, a cavity can burrow down into the interior of the tooth, which then will affect the nerve endings and organic material within the center of the tooth. It can also affect the root system, not to mention neighboring teeth. Tooth decay will not remain isolated if untreated. That is why it is in your best interest to schedule any necessary cavity fillings or other treatments as soon as possible.
Likewise, if you are experiencing some kind of pain or discomfort within your mouth, it is important to schedule a visit with your dentist. They can inspect your tooth and pinpoint what is going on. There’s no telling what the problem might be, and, usually, when pain begins, it is not something that will just go away. It isn’t like a stomach ache that will correct itself after a few hours. The pain needs to be addressed because, as is the case with a cavity, the longer you put off having the issue inspected and treated, the greater the chance of the problem spreading and causing problems with other teeth in your mouth.
Your daily dental habits and regularly seeing your dentist are extremely important in protecting and saving your natural teeth.
Need Specialized Help? Schedule Your Appointment Today
Even if you have the best dental habits imaginable, it is possible to sustain an injury to your mouth, which in turn can damage the internal nerve endings of a tooth. You might slip and catch your mouth on the sidewalk or miss a baseball while playing catch and end up with it smacking you in the mouth, cracking your teeth in the process.
Whatever the cause, it is important for you to seek professional help to minimize the possible damage and long-term effects of the injury. So, if you believe you need a root canal, have suffered a cracked tooth, or your general dentist has recommended you seek out a specialist, now is the time to schedule your appointment today with the team at Southern Endodontic Specialists. Our two specialized dentists, Dr. Ber and Dr. Gaudet are here for all of your endodontic needs! Give the friendly customer service staff a call, or fill out an appointment request form right on the website today.