When it comes to caring for your oral health, you should focus on preventing problems rather than waiting to treat problems as they come up. The best way to do this is to visit the dentist twice each year for examinations and cleanings. By seeing your dentist regularly, problems can be identified while they are still small and easy to treat. Other conditions, such as gum disease, can also be discovered and treated before they become more serious.
Follow these steps to ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy and disease free:
- Brush your teeth at least twice every day. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste that contains fluoride. Brush for at least two minutes with gentle motions, angled toward the gum line. Don’t brush too hard; doing so risks damaging gum tissue.
- Floss at least once every day—preferably before bedtime. Using your preferred dental floss—all are equally effective—gently floss between teeth with an up and down motion. Don’t forget to floss between your back teeth.
- Don’t skip dental appointments. Most people need to go to the dentist at least twice each year for examinations and cleanings. If you have gum disease or other issues, your dentist might recommend more frequent visits.