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Oral Hygiene

flossingOral hygiene consists of everything you do to keep your mouth clean and healthy such as by brushing and flossing. These prevent the build-up of plaque — the thin sticky film of bacteria that is the main culprit in gum disease and tooth decay.

Plaque produces acids that eat away the hard enamel surface of the teeth, eventually resulting in cavities. It also irritates the gums leading to gum disease.

It takes daily care to prevent oral hygiene problems.

Mouthwash, fluoride (in toothpaste, drinking water or dental therapy), and dental sealants can help. Regular visits for examination and professional cleaning are essential. Your dental hygienist uses special tools too remove hardened plaque (known as tartar) and to provide a degree of cleaning you can’t achieve at home.

Don’t give up on oral hygiene even if you already have lost teeth, wear dentures or have advanced gum disease. Proper hygiene can help prevent even more problems from occurring.

Flossing

Many people are never taught either why or how to floss. You should floss daily to remove plaque and debris in between teeth and below the gum lines where brushing can’t reach it.

Ease a length of floss between two teeth and work it gently up and down several times with a rubbing motion. Hold the floss so as to form a “C” shape first in one direction, then the other, so as to reach every surface the toothbrush can’t.

Make flossing a part of your daily routine. It’s important.

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