As your Plantation dentist, we know you’ve got some questions when it comes to how best to care for your teeth and oral health — we hear them in our office every day. Like, how often should you change your toothbrush? And what’s the deal with fluoride, anyway? Today, we’re in with answers to some of the most frequent questions surrounding oral health and hygiene. Keep reading to learn more from the Comfort Dentists!
Q: I only brush my teeth in the morning. Is that bad?
A: Twice a day brushing is crucial for healthy teeth and gums. Why? Oral hygiene is a constant battle against plaque, the slimy material that’s constantly forming on your teeth. When not properly removed, the substance turns into tartar — the yellow, hard substance that causes tooth decay and gum disease.
Patients often think brushing only in the morning is sufficient. Unfortunately, when you neglect to remove bacteria and food particles at night, you’re letting these substances attack your tooth enamel during sleep — when saliva isn’t flowing well enough to wash away the decay-causing materials. For the best clean, brush at least twice daily, preferably after breakfast and before bed.
Q: How often should I change my toothbrush?
A: It’s not surprising that a worn toothbrush just doesn’t clean as well as a new one. That’s why you should change your manual toothbrush or electric toothbrush head every three to four months, or as soon as its bristles begin to show wear. Bushes should also be switched after illness to prevent the spread of germs.
Q: Should I invest in an electric toothbrush?
A: While manual toothbrushes can provide just the same clean as an electric one, patients who use electric brushes often benefit from better oral health overall. That’s because the electric toothbrush makes cleaning easier, and also reduces the temptation to brush too aggressively. And because electric toothbrushes usually come with an automatic timer, you’ll be far more likely to brush for the full two minutes, every single time.
Q: Fluoride is bad for me, right?
A: There’s been a lot of misinformation surrounding fluoride over the past decade. The truth is, the mineral strengthens tooth enamel to protect your teeth from cavities and infection. Most water systems in the US are fluoridated, but if you prefer to drink filtered water, make sure you’re getting exposure to the mineral from an ADA-approved toothpaste or mouthrinse.
More questions? Let us know!
Is your question missing from this list? Let us know about it in the comments section! We always love hearing from our patients.
If it’s been more than six months since your last visit to the dentist in Plantation, don’t wait to schedule your appointment! Preventive care is the secret to maintaining healthy teeth and gums for a lifetime.