Importance of National Brush Day!

Get ready to participate in the first ever National Brush Day on November 1, 2013!  With Halloween the day before, it’s the perfect time to reemphasize the importance of oral hygiene.  Having extra candy occasionally is fun, but your kiddos will need to keep their teeth extra clean to help prevent cavities.  Brushing for two minutes, two times a day is highly recommended (maybe 3 or 4 during Halloween).  It is also important for your child to floss once a day (maybe twice for Halloween) to help prevent cavities from forming in between the teeth.

Did you know that a child’s beverage choice has a major effect on the amount of decay they experience?  The absolute best choice is fluoridated water.  Pop and juice should be avoided as much as possible.  If your kids do drink pop or juice, it should be consumed all in one sitting (with a meal) to limit the acid exposure.

Another great way to help your child achieve his or her best oral health is to visit the dentist every six months.  Catching decay early is a great way to reverse the process (with the use of fluoride and improved brushing and flossing) or to ensure the restoration to fix the cavity remains minimal.  The dental team at your child’s dental home can also encourage and help your kiddo reach their dental hygiene goals.

Be sure to check out http://2min2x.org/ for useful dental information and resources for every age group.  Happy Halloween and Happy National Brush Day everyone!!

BRUSH THOSE BRACKETS!

Orthodontic treatment is a fantastic option for people who have crowded or crooked teeth or for individuals whose upper and lower jaws do not align properly. Having a bite that is off (malocclusion) can lead to tooth decay and gum disease as well as abnormal wear of tooth enamel and potentially jaw problems if left uncorrected. Malocclusion can be inherited or it can be caused by thumb sucking, prolonged pacifier use, injury, or early/late tooth loss.

Getting braces can greatly improve dental health as well as increase confidence. However, if you are considering orthodontic treatment for your child, teen, or yourself, you should be prepared to increase the amount of time spent on oral hygiene. If braces are not properly cared for, long term consequences can result.

Braces increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease because of the amount of plaque that adheres to the brackets and the obstacles the brackets and wires create to removing the plaque. It is absolutely essential for a person with braces to brush every surface of the brackets and remove as much plaque and bacteria as possible. If they do not do this, the bacteria in the plaque left around the brackets will decalcify the enamel surrounding the brackets, creating permanent bright white spots on the teeth.

flossers

Although it is difficult to do so with braces, it is completely necessary to floss daily. There are products to make it easier for ortho patients to floss, so look for those and use them! One example of a helpful product is the platypus flosser (see picture below). Leaving plaque between your teeth will lead to cavities and gum disease. Don’t forget to brush your gums as well. Be ready and willing to do whatever your orthodontist/dentist recommends to maintain to optimal oral hygiene. Happy smiling everyone!

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