Tips for Proper Oral Care from a Family Dentist

Tips for Proper Oral Care from a Family Dentist from Assembly Dental in Somerville, MAUnlike other body organs, your teeth cannot regenerate when damaged. Therefore, you will need to repair the teeth with synthetic materials to have a full-functioning smile. Here are some tips from a family dentist to help maintain proper oral care to preserve the only set of natural teeth you will ever have.


Brushing removes plaque, a soft, sticky film that constantly forms on the teeth. Plaque consists of bacteria that break down food and produce acids. These acids attack the tooth enamel (outer surface of the tooth) and the gums, leading to gum disease. In addition, plaque not removed regularly will harden into tartar, which one cannot remove at home. It is important to understand that plaque forms immediately after eating or drinking and only takes 24 to 48 hours to become tartar.

To eliminate the risk of damaged teeth and gums, family dentists recommend patients brush twice a day for two minutes per session. They should also brush their tongue for at least 30 seconds during each session to eliminate bacteria buildup that causes bad breath. Brush with a soft to medium bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to promote firm gums and strong tooth enamel.


Flossing is one of the most overlooked parts of people’s oral regimes. However, it is vital to the health of the gums and teeth. Flossing at least once a day is recommended before brushing. Flossing helps remove interdental plaque, which is plaque between the teeth and trapped under the lining of the gums. In addition, it helps to eliminate trapped food particles that cause bad breath.

Flossing has progressed passed a simple flavored string. While still effective, there are now other types of flosses, including floss picks, threaders, waxed and unwaxed, flavored and plain, and devices such as a water flosser or a toothbrush and flosser combo. One should take in the following tips before choosing a floss:

  • The condition and shape of their teeth.
  • Whether or not they have a dental appliance (bridge, braces, dentures, etc.).
  • Sensitivity of the gums or if they have gingivitis.
  • The severity of the malocclusion (if applicable).

Choosing a flossing product can be overwhelming with all the options available. To eliminate this feeling, the family dentist will recommend all products or product types based on a patient’s oral condition during their routine appointments.

Mouthwash and Rinses

Mouth rinses are important for patients four years and up. Mouthwashes can help kill bacteria in the mouth, reduce plaque buildup, and freshen one’s breath. They also help control bad breath caused by gum disease or tooth decay. Rinses are usually used after brushing to remove any remaining food particles between the teeth and lingering bacteria missed during brushing. Rinsing with water alone will not do this job effectively.

Many rinses are available, catering to different oral conditions and parts of the mouth. For example, a patient may use an oral rinse to manage their periodontal disease, while another may only need one to protect their enamel. After assessing a patient’s oral state, a family dentist can recommend the most effective rinse for them.

Nutrition and Oral Care

A healthy diet is an essential part of a healthy smile. A balanced diet will help one maintain strong teeth and gums, which can prevent cavities from forming in the first place. Limiting or completely cutting out acidic and sugary foods and beverages such as sodas or fruit juices is the best way to keep teeth strong. Cutting out these substances will lessen the chances of the tooth enamel weakening, making it harder for the teeth to become damaged.

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Learn More Today

Maintaining proper oral care does not have to be hard; you simply need to remain diligent. If you have questions regarding your oral health, contact our family dentist today. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have or schedule an appointment.

Request an appointment or call Assembly Dental at 857-300-5779 for an appointment in our Somerville office.

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