We are open - safety is our top priority!
Posted on: July 11, 2022
Basic Dental Care in Connecticut
To have a healthy body, you need a healthy mouth. To have a healthy mouth, you must have good basic dental care. What does basic dental care include? At a minimum, according to the American Dental Association, your should brush and floss daily, use fluoridated toothpaste, and get regular dental checkups. But is there more? The following dental care tips may help you maintain a good oral hygiene regimen so that both your body and your mouth are healthy.
Where Does Basic Dental Care Start?
Although the following is the minimum care recommended by the ADA, it can be expanded to provide you with the best oral hygiene regimen possible.
- Brush twice daily
- Use toothpaste with fluoride
- Floss at least once daily
- Have an annual exam and teeth cleaning from your dentist
If you have children, you should start brushing their teeth as soon as they’re able to feed themselves. This does not have to be complicated. Give them a toothbrush to chew on after they’ve eaten. It doesn’t need to contain toothpaste yet, and it shouldn’t, but it gets them in the habit of using a toothbrush after meals, and the bristles will feel good on teething gums.
Click here to schedule a dental exam and teeth cleaning.
Brushing Twice Daily
For older children and adults, brush each quadrant of your mouth for at least 30 seconds. A quadrant is:
- The upper right side of your jaw
- The lower right side of your jaw
- The upper left side of your jaw
- The lower left side of your jaw
It doesn’t matter whether you do the right side or the left side first, the upper or the lower first. The important issue is to brush both sides, both upper and lower teeth, for 30 seconds each, so your brushing routine should take two full minutes. Young children may not be able to do this without encouragement or an incentive, but they can strive for it.
After you eat or drink anything except plain water, bacteria start to form due to the food particles that remain in your mouth. When not removed through brushing and flossing, plaque starts to form. Plaque is a very hard substance that can only be removed by a dentist. If it remains on the teeth, it will cause periodontal disease to start, which can cause you to lose all your teeth.
When you brush, use a gentle, circular motion with a back-and-forth stroke to remove as many bacteria and food particles as possible. Avoid using firm pressure as that can cause damaging striations in your tooth enamel, and you don’t want to do that. Ideally, you should brush and floss after each meal or snack, but if that’s not feasible, then rinse your mouth well with clear water and then brush and floss when you can.
Your toothbrush should be changed every three months. If you’ve been ill, then change your toothbrush when you recover so that you avoid reinfecting yourself. If your toothbrush bristles become frayed or splayed, change to a new toothbrush.
Your toothbrush should have soft bristles of varying lengths. The uneven lengths allow the bristles to reach between the teeth and clean the surfaces of the teeth with equal effectiveness. Unless your dentist specifically recommends otherwise, use a toothbrush with soft bristles that carries the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
Most toothpaste now contains fluoride, which is important for healthy teeth. Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral that strengthens your tooth enamel and protects against cavities. Although most municipalities now fluoridate their water supply, it’s to the minimum level required for health, so don’t be concerned that you’re getting too much fluoride. If you have questions, be sure to ask your dentist. Also, ensure that your toothpaste carries the ADA Seal of Acceptance, but it doesn’t matter whether you use gel or paste.
Flossing should be an integral part of your daily oral hygiene regimen. Dental floss can reach the nooks and crannies that your toothbrush can’t, so you’ll have a cleaner mouth overall. In fact, if you can’t brush and floss when you’re out and about, flossing and then rinsing your mouth with plain water is a good substitute until you can brush.
The type of floss you use is a strictly personal preference. Some people prefer the traditional type of dental floss. Others prefer dental picks, which are also very portable and don’t take up much room. Still, others prefer water flossers. No matter your preference, the important factor is that you floss.
It also doesn’t matter whether you floss first and then brush or brush first and then floss. Either way works equally well. It’s simply a matter of personal preference. If you have questions, however, ask your dentist.
Mouthwash can be the icing on the cake to your daily oral hygiene regimen. Not only does it clean your breath, but it also removes any residual bacteria and food particles that brushing and flossing may have missed. Alcohol-free formulas are available, but the flavor and type don’t matter as long as your mouthwash carries the ADA Seal of Acceptance. If you have questions, of course, then ask your dentist.
What Else Can I Do?
One way to make your basic dental care more portable is to buy travel-sized versions of your favorite mouthwash, toothbrush, and toothpaste. And don’t forget the dental floss either! This will ensure it’s more convenient to practice good dental care when you’re not home.
Consider snacking on nuts, fruits, and vegetables rather than high-calorie, sugar-laden products such as cookies, cake, candy, and sodas. This will benefit your mouth as well as your waistline, and your body will be healthier when you eat more fruits and vegetables. In addition, the crunchy texture will help cleanse your mouth, and the extra fiber, vitamins, and minerals may help you lose weight and be healthier.
Does My Connecticut Dentist Offer Basic Dental Care Services?
Our Connecticut dental office provides the annual or semi-annual basic dental checkups that will help maintain your optimal oral health. Even though you maintain an excellent oral hygiene regimen, it’s important to have regular exams and teeth cleaning to ensure there aren’t problems that you haven’t noticed. Sometimes, diseases present asymptomatically, so you could have a problem and be unaware of its presence. Your dentist can advise you of it and then take proactive steps to eliminate it before the disease escalates.
Oral cancer is a disease that presents asymptomatically, and you won’t notice it until it has spread. We routinely screen all new patients for oral cancer because it’s currently the fastest spreading cancer, accounting for three percent of all new cases. The screening procedure isn’t invasive or painful, your dentist will do it while performing your checkup, but we recommend having it done.
We Are Here to Help You Achieve Better Dental Health
It’s easy to relegate your dental hygiene to the bottom of the list, but given its importance to your body and its impact on your overall health, we recommend placing it at the top of the list. It can be very tempting to skimp on your daily routine when you’re tired or rushed, but try not to do that.
If it’s been a while since your last checkup and exam, then contact Premier Dental of Connecticut at to schedule an appointment. We’ve made it very easy to schedule an appointment with our convenient online scheduling tool, you can call the office, or you can stop by when it’s convenient.
Contact us today for an appointment. We look forward to working with you.