10 Dental Hygiene Tips for Healthy Teeth & Gums

At Interlake Dental Centre, our team knows that healthy teeth and gums contribute to overall wellness. Today, our dentists share their top 10 dental hygiene tips for maintaining a healthy smile. 

10 Tips for Healthy Teeth & Gums

Brushing and flossing are critical to a good dental routine, However, you can also do other things to help maintain healthy teeth and gums, which can benefit your general well-being. 

1. Brush Your Teeth Twice a Day for Two Minutes Each Time

Regular maintenance is a foundational aspect of keeping your teeth clean and healthy. Brushing for two minutes each time twice per day will help to prevent plaque. Patients with children should introduce this concept early and look for ways to make it fun. 

Try to spend 30 seconds on each quadrant of your mouth to make it easier to clean every tooth equally. Use small circular motions and angle the head of the brush towards the gums. Make sure to clean all surfaces, in addition to along the gum line, both on the fronts and backs of your teeth. Some patients also find it helps to use an electric toothbrush. 

2. Floss Daily

We recommend flossing every night before brushing to eliminate any food particles or plaque that you're unable to dislodge with your toothbrush. If you only brush and choose not to floss, small particles of food and other deposits can be missed, eventually leading to decay. To avoid this, spend two minutes each day flossing. When you first start to floss, it may cause pain if your gums are sensitive. This is natural and will cease in a few days. Be sure to slide the floss up and down along the entire tooth. Don't ignore tight spaces, as these are the most important places to floss since your toothbrush can't reach them. 

3. Replace Your Toothbrush Once It Starts to Wear 

As a general rule, you should get a new toothbrush every 3 to 6 months. Damaged or frayed toothbrushes can't clean the surface of your teeth correctly and can cause damage to your gums. Replacing your toothbrush often also allows you to help keep it clean. Always rinse your toothbrush well and store it so it can dry. Remember to replace your toothbrush if you've been sick to prevent bacteria from being re-introduced into your mouth.

4. Visit Your Dentist Every Six Months

Your dentist will be able to prevent issues before they start, or at least to catch them early if you have regular dental appointments. Regular visits also allow your teeth to get a thorough professional cleaning twice a year, removing any buildup of plaque and tartar, which helps to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

5. Maintain a Healthy Diet

Avoiding sweetened foods (such as pop, sports drinks, and candy) as well as including foods high in calcium will help to support strong and healthy teeth. As a side benefit, your body will thank you, too. Some foods that will help to strengthen your teeth include leafy greens, almonds, yogurt, and cheese. Speak to your dentist for recommendations of foods that will help keep your teeth strong for years to come.

6. Use Dental Hygiene Products

Brushing and flossing are key to preventive dental health, but you can help keep your teeth in top condition by incorporating supplemental aids into your routine as well. Examples of these products include mouthwash, oral irrigators, interdental cleaners, and tongue cleaners. These aids can help support good oral health and should be used in conjunction with regular brushing and flossing.

7. Stay Hydrated

Sufficient hydration is not only good for your overall health but being hydrated also helps maintain a healthy saliva flow. Saliva aids in dental health by moving food particles through your mouth, preventing most of them from lodging in your teeth where bacteria can grow. It also helps to keep your mouth comfortable.

8. Don't Smoke

Smoking causes superficial concerns, such as tooth staining, as well as severe health issues like gum disease which can lead to tooth loss and oral cancer, among other issues. One of the best things you could do for your oral and overall health is to quit smoking immediately.

9. Consider Dental Sealants

Dental sealants fill the depressions and grooves (fissures) of your molars and premolars, helping to protect your teeth from cavities and plaque. Sealants can help many people, but children and teens are good candidates as they often don't brush as well as adults, leading to a higher rate of cavities.

10. Regularly Examine the Inside of Your Mouth

While regular checkups with your dentist are an excellent preventive measure, issues can develop in the months between visits. To prevent major concerns, you should do a quick scan of the inside of your mouth as part of your daily routine.

Check your teeth and gums for anything that has changed or seems unusual. Make sure you share this information with your dentist at your next appointment or call your dentist's office if you discover anything concerning. Regular self-exams are beneficial to maintaining your health.

To learn more about proper dental hygiene, contact our Selkirk dentists today.

New Patients Always Welcome

Looking for a dentist in Selkirk? We're happily accepting new patients at our dental clinic! Contact us to get started today.

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  • Monday:08:00 am - 05:00 pm
  • Tuesday:08:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Wednesday:08:00 am - 07:00 pm
  • Thursday:08:00 am - 05:00 pm
  • Friday:08:00 am - 02:00 pm
  • Saturday:Closed
  • Sunday:Closed
(204) 785-8662