While it’s recommended you visit your dentist on a regular basis, proper dental care begins in the home. Making healthy meals, eating fewer snacks, and correctly using your oral hygiene tools are just a few ways to help control the bacteria and plaque in your mouth that can cause cavities and gum disease. In order to protect the oral health of you and your family, an adequate at-home dental routine is of the utmost importance.

The first step in your family’s oral care routine should be flossing. By flossing at least once a day, you can prevent plaque from forming on your teeth and gumlines. Flossing comes first so that any loosened food particles are removed from the mouth during the other steps of your routine. To floss, simply take 12-16 inches of dental floss and wrap it around your middle fingers, with 1-2 inches held between them. This will be the part that you guide between your teeth with your thumb and forefingers. Curve the floss around each tooth, making a “C” shape, in order to properly clean the sides and under the gumline. If standard dental floss proves difficult for the younger members of your family, there are a variety of disposable flossing products to try instead.

The next step in your family’s regimen should be brushing. It’s best to use an electric toothbrush with soft bristles at least twice a day. The soft bristles are gentle on your gums and enamel, while the electric aspect helps you achieve a better clean. Most people brush their teeth in the morning, and then again before going to bed. Whatever you choose, bedtime brushing is important as it removes any bacteria and plaque that would otherwise sit in your mouth overnight. With your brush in hand, place the bristles on teeth and gums at a 45-degree angle. Using small, circular motions, brush the inner, outer, and biting surfaces of each tooth. Your bristles should always touch your gumlines in order to ensure they’re being properly cleaned. Finish things up by brushing the back of your front teeth and the surface of your tongue.

Your last step is rinsing, which helps get rid of any bacteria that you may have missed. Using mouthwash is also a good alternative to use after meals if you’re unable to brush your teeth at the moment. If you’re currently using an over-the-counter dental rinse, it would be wise to consult with your dentist to ensure you’re using a product that works best for you and your family’s needs. When you’re ready to rinse, simply follow the instructions on the packaging. Most products will ask that you swish the liquid in your mouth for a short period of time. When time is up, simply spit and you’re good to go!

Keep your family smiling by instilling a dental care routine that includes flossing, brushing, and rinsing. In doing so, dental visits will go smoothly and your family will face fewer oral health issues.

Need more information and tips on achieving great oral health for you and your family? Book your next dental appointment with us by calling 562-434-6414 or requesting an appointment online on this page.