Tips From Your Mission Viejo Dentist
Dental Hygiene Tips - Proper Brushing
Be sure to brush thoroughly after meals whenever possible, and floss daily. Busy schedules and activities can encourage snacking. That is why choosing a proper diet will help you to maintain and preserve your teeth. If you wear custom-made appliances, or braces, pay special attention to keeping spaces between the teeth and arch wires clean by using floss threaders. Orthodontic toothbrushes are specially designed to make cleaning teeth and braces easier. If you participate in contact sports, you may want to inquire about or have a custom-made mouth guard fitted during an oral care visit. Mouth guards assist in providing protection against dental injuries.
Adolescent Oral Health
A balanced nutritional diet and oral hygiene care regularly practiced at home and throughout the day are particularly important during a teen's years. A proper diet, brushing regularly, and flossing play an important role in maintaining a beautiful healthy smile and preserving teeth during these challenging years.
Cavities and periodontal disease can be a threat to teens as well as adults. Recent survey results show that bleeding gums were most prevalent among adolescents and that three-fourths of 13 to 17 year-olds had gums that bled.
Adult Oral Health
The hectic pace of today's adult lifestyle often leaves little time for the daily oral health care routine needed to prevent cavities and periodontal disease. This is unfortunate since periodontal disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults. An estimated 75% of Americans reportedly have some form of periodontal disease.
Early detection of periodontal disease reduces the risk of permanent damage to teeth and gums and can prevent more extensive and costly treatment in later years. Regular professional visits, every six months or as scheduled by your dental hygienist, will help you learn more about proper care for your teeth and gums. Regular professional visits are important because gingivitis, the early stage of periodontal disease, is usually painless; you may not be able to detect it on your own.
Senior Oral Health
Recent surveys show that ninety percent of adults have, on average, 23.5 teeth. Almost a third of adults have all 28 teeth, and fifty percent age 55 and older wear partial or complete dentures. But whether caring for original teeth or dentures, seniors face a range of special oral concerns, including root decay and periodontal disease. You can keep your smile healthy by following a routine of proper oral care and making regular visits to your registered dental hygienist and dentist.
If you have arthritis or limited use of your hands, try adapting the toothbrush for easy use. Insert the handle into a rubber ball or sponge hair curler; or glue the toothbrush handle into a bicycle grip. Toothbrush handles can be lengthened with a piece of wood or plastic such as a ruler, ice cream bar stick or tongue depressor. For people who have dexterity problems and cannot use a manual toothbrush, an electric toothbrush may be easier to use. Numerous studies confirm that electric brushes are excellent plaque removing devices and are extremely effective in stimulating gums. Dental floss holders are also available.
Among other benefits, daily brushing and flossing protect older smiles from two common problems of getting older: Root decay--a condition that affects older adults if a great amount of root surfaces are exposed--and tooth decay caused by the weakening or chipping of older fillings.
Dentures, full or partial, should be brushed daily with a soft toothbrush or denture cleaning brush, using a commercially prepared denture powder or paste, hand soap, or baking soda. Toxic or abrasive household cleaners should never be used. Dentures should be brushed inside and outside, and rinsed with cool water. Remaining natural teeth and gums, especially those teeth supporting a partial denture, should also be brushed. When not in use, dentures should be covered with water or a denture cleaning solution to prevent drying.