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9 Common Oral Hygiene Mistakes

common oral hygiene mistakesOften times, we see patients come in with very small cavities, or are in the early stages of gum disease. With the right oral hygiene, patients can avoid the small problems that typically end up becoming major issues in the long run. Listed below are nine common oral hygiene health mistakes that most people commonly make:

Forgetting to Brush

What happens when you forget to brush your teeth? Failure to brush on a daily basis leads to problems with tooth decay and gum disease. In just one day, there can be a significant amount of bacteria in the mouth that begins to build up around the teeth and can infect the gums. The teeth are vulnerable to decay overnight, as carbohydrates leave behind sugars in the mouth, which quickly eat away at the enamel of teeth. If you commonly forget to brush, set an alarm on your phone so you remember to brush morning and night. Drink plenty of water after eating and drinking, as it helps to flush sugars out of the mouth, and reduces the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

Changing Your Toothbrush

How often do you change your toothbrush? A toothbrush scrubs away a lot of bacteria, but there is a good chance a lot of bacteria sticks to the bristles of an older toothbrush. At Layton Hills Dental, we recommend replacing your toothbrush every three to four months. We will happily provide you with a new toothbrush at your next dental cleaning!

Flossing

How often do you remember to floss? Daily flossing is a must to remove bacteria and excess food from the mouth. Food becomes stuck between the teeth, and it will increase the likelihood that you will may develop cavities in these areas in the future.

Storing Your Toothbrush

Where are you keeping your toothbrush? If you toss it into a drawer, its picking up bacteria! Use a holder to store your toothbrush upright so the water drips off, and to ensure it has access to air to dry out.

Not Using Fluoride

We see a number of patients ditching traditional toothpaste for homemade or “natural” toothpastes. While some of these toothpastes are great for your gums, they aren’t effective for complete oral health. Natural toothpastes often have hard abrasives, which can lead to deterioration of enamel on your teeth. The hard abrasiveness can also lead to gum recession, as well. Toothpaste with fluoride helps to strengthen the enamel, and reverses the early stages of gingivitis.

Sharing a Toothbrush

Never ever share a toothbrush! Toothbrush sharing isn’t cute – it’s sharing bacteria with each other. That bacteria on the toothbrush can lead to tooth decay on your teeth or your partners teeth. Avoid the sharing and use your own toothbrush! Call our office and we will happily provide you with a toothbrush at your next cleaning.

Brush Your Tongue

What is the biggest bacteria attractant in your mouth? Your tongue! The tongue is often forgotten about when brushing the teeth. Always remember to scrub your tongue to remove the bacteria. Scrubbing your tongue can assist in reducing bad breath problems, as well.

Gargling

Using a mouthwash to gargle daily helps to reduce gum disease concerns. If you aren’t a fan of mouthwash, try using vinegar. Apple cider vinegar helps to remove stains, and kills bacteria in the mouth.

Avoiding the Dentist

Some people simply do not like coming in to the dentist for an annual cleaning. Becuase of this, we offer nitrous oxide for those that suffer from dental anxiety. We highly recommend annual cleanings and examinations, as it allows us to x-ray your teeth to look for small cavities within the teeth. Stop ignoring our emails, phone calls, and postcards! Dental cleanings are vital for your best and proper oral health. Contact our Layton dental office today to schedule your cleaning. (801) 896-9694 We look forward to seeing you!