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Oftentimes, general oral health is not something we think about on a daily basis – unless we have a problem. Most of us probably were taught to brush our teeth twice a day, maybe floss, and use mouthwash. But as we get older, those good dental hygiene habits tend to take a back seat to our busy lives, and our mouths do not get the care that they need. That is when problems can begin to develop, and once those problems develop, it may be too late to fix them.

As kids, we probably went to the dentist twice a year; the recommendation by dental professionals. And we probably hated it. After all – who would want a metal spike digging between our teeth and scraping on them when we are ten years old? Kids are always portrayed as the “problem patients” when it comes to going to the dentist. But what about adults? Do you go to the dentist twice a year for your cleanings and checkups? If you have dental insurance, it is probably covered, because they know that it is a lot less costly for you to go to the dentist and have things checked out before they become a problem, than it is to deal with a major dental disaster. So take advantage of the fact that you get two visits to the dentist a year, and remember, it is not as scary as you thought it was as a kid. You are doing the right thing for your teeth, gums, and mouth in general, if you go to the dentist regularly.

But how do you take care of your mouth on a daily basis? Unless you are married to someone who works at a dentist’s office, you may not really know what to do each day to maintain optimal oral health. This is not just talking about your teeth, although that is a big part of it, but your whole mouth.

Your gums are an area that are often overlooked when it comes to oral health, and that is because for most people they see no problems with their gums. But if you do not take care of your gums, you may develop gingivitis, which will cause your gums to disappear, exposing the roots of your teeth. If caught early, it is treatable and may be reversed, but it is best to prevent it to begin with. The best way to prevent gingivitis is to simply floss. This cleans out the bacteria living at the base of your teeth, and stimulates blood flow to your gums. Floss before you brush your teeth to make sure that anything you loosen gets brushed away.

Speaking of brushing – do you brush twice a day? If you are like most people, your teeth are lucky to get brushed twice a week. We are all busy, and rushing out the door in the morning or getting ready for bed after a long day at work, the toothbrush is the thing farthest from our mind. But we should really make an effort to brush twice a day, and just make it a habit. If it is a habit, you are more likely to keep doing it on a regular basis. And having a good toothbrush and toothpaste matters. Yes, it is easy to skimp on both, but spend the extra couple dollars to buy something that is going to hold up and do a good job of brushing and cleaning your teeth.

If you would like additional information about good oral health techniques, Countryside Dental Group has the experts to help you out. Please feel free to contact us so we can discuss a plan to keep your entire mouth healthy.