Plaque is the cause of gum disease, which makes it imperative that we maintain a high standard of oral hygiene. Plaque turns into calculus (sometimes called tartar) which bonds to the tooth so strongly that is can only be professionally removed. Regular brushing, flossing and rinsing with mouth wash accompanied by regular dental visits and cleans can help prevent gum disease.
To maintain your healthy smile, we recommend regular appointments at any of our three locations: Wyndham Vale, Tarneit and Craigieburn to ensure we can identify any arising concerns. Scaling, polishing and a thorough analysis of hard and soft tissue, all help determine the health of your gums and teeth.
Tips brushing technique
1. Brush after breakfast to remove food particles and any plaque that was built up after your sleep. We also suggest you brush before bed, as sleeping decreases your saliva, leaving your teeth more vulnerable to bacterial acids.
2. Brush lightly; brushing too hard can cause gums to recede. Plaque attaches to teeth and can’t be totally removed by rinsing, but just a light brushing will do the trick. Try holding your toothbrush the same way you hold a pen. This encourages a lighter stroke.
3. Brush for at least two minutes. Set a timer if you have to, but don’t skimp on brushing time. Longer is fine, but two minutes is the minimum time needed to adequately clean all your teeth.
4. Always use a toothbrush with “soft” or “extra soft” bristles. The harder the brush, the greater the risk of harming gum tissue.
5. Change your toothbrush regularly. As soon as the bristles begin to splay, the toothbrush loses its ability to clean properly. Throw away your old toothbrush after three months or when the bristles flare, whichever comes first. If you find your bristles flaring much sooner than three months, you may be brushing too hard. Try easing up.
Tips for flossing:
Many people never learned to floss as children. But flossing is critical to healthy gums and it’s never too late to start. A common rule of thumb says that any difficult new habit becomes second nature after only three weeks. If you have difficulty figuring out what to do, ask our staff to give you a personal lesson during your next visit.
1. Although there is no research to recommend an optimum number of times to floss, most dentists recommend a thorough flossing at least once a day.
2. Take your time. Flossing requires a certain amount of dexterity and thought. Don’t rush.
3. Choose your own time. Although most people find that just before bed is an ideal time, many oral health professionals recommend flossing any time that is most convenient to ensure that you will continue to floss regularly.
4. Don’t skimp on the floss. Use as much as you need to clean both sides of every tooth with a fresh section of floss. In fact, you may need to floss one tooth several times (using fresh sections of floss) to remove all the food debris.
5. Choose the type that works best for you. There are many different types of floss: waxed and unwaxed, flavoured and unflavoured, ribbon and thread. Try different varieties before settling on one. There are tougher shred-resistant varieties that work well for people with rough edges that tend to catch and rip floss.
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