Three Things Your Dentist Wants You to Know

Of course you brush your teeth every day. At least two times. And you floss every day,dr._carol_ford too, right? Dr. Ford has enough experience to know that few people floss regularly or completely. Even if you don’t do a perfect job flossing, there are three things she would like all her patients to do.

1. Use a Sonicare toothbrush. “They are far more effective than a mechanical brush,” says Dr. Ford. Sonicare toothbrushes churn the toothpaste and water in your mouth, creating an oxygen-rich foam. By squirting water between and behind the teeth, Sonicare cleans the gum line—where plaque forms—reducing bacterial growth. Less plaque means healthier gums. Some models come with an easy sterilizer. “Whether you use the sterilizer or not, you should replace the toothbrush head every three months,” Dr. Ford says. “And if you do use a mechanical toothbrush, buy a new one every three months. The bristles wear out, and the germs build up.”

2. Floss. “If you hate flossing, figure out some way to get something between your teeth—floss picks, tiny brush-picks, plastic swords, even careful use of wood toothpicks is better than nothing,” Dr. Ford recommends.  If you can’t do it every day, try for three times a week. Something is better than nothing, but regular cleaning between teeth will keep your teeth and gums healthy and your smile brighter for a much longer time.

3. Nothing replaces regular dental care. “Four times a year is not too often,” Dr. Ford says. “Most people think twice a year is enough. But the silent killers of oral cancer and periodontal disease are easier to find and treat if they are caught early,” Dr. Ford adds.

Most people don’t notice symptoms of oral cancer, and a regular check up should include a cancer screening. “You won’t feel pain until oral cancer is advanced,” cautions Dr. Ford. “Periodontal disease is also not painful until it’s advanced. By the time you notice persistent bad breath and a bad taste in your mouth, you are looking at a lot more damage,” says Dr. Ford.

Between visits she recommends Carifree products—dental rinses and gels that neutralize the acids in your mouth. Certain Carifree products also re-mineralize small surface legions on your teeth and help rebuild the tooth’s surface. Sensodyne ProNamel may help desensitize sensitive teeth and re-mineralize the tooth’s surface, as well, Dr. Ford noted.

Today is a good take to take care of your smile—call the office today and make an appointment to make sure you keep that smile bright for years to come.


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