dental care


Brushing Your Teeth

by JackRob,Dentist

Brushing Your Teeth

Brushing Your Teeth

Brushing your teeth and Dental health care is often a neglected issue. According to the American Dental Association, the incidence of untreated dental health disorders is widely attributed to lack of money and will power. As a result, children from low-income families are often the victims of oral diseases that spread throughout the country and even globally. In contrast, those in the mid-income level avail of dental insurance plans to cover for their dental health care needs.

Despite the availability of government subsidized dental assistance programs in their areas, only a few of these low-income families avail the benefits. Generally, schools also offer dental care to partially cover for professional services. Hence, what is really lacking is the will power to visit dental clinics or even to practice personal dental hygiene. This is again influenced by other factors such as dental phobia or fear of dentists or lack of complete understanding about the importance of teeth cleaning.

Fear of dentists is common or normal among children. However, this should not be taken lightly since this factor will only worsen the oral health of these children. A child trained to perform regular teeth cleaning as part of his personal hygiene, rarely experience tooth decay problems. Hence, an initial visit to the dentist will not be traumatic if no pain was associated with the visit. Encouraging a child to experience dental visits, as part of his teeth-cleaning regimen will prevent dental phobia from taking place.

Brushing your teeth is important and entails more than the simple act of brushing the teeth. Below are some important facts to help you instill in the mind of your growing child why the act of teeth cleaning plays an important part of one's oral hygiene.

Brushing Your Teeth, A Few Important Facts

1. According to the 2000 Surgeon General report in the U.S., there is already an existing "silent epidemic" of oral disease that stem from untreated tooth decay.

2. Plaque, which is the build up of bacterial deposit and the most common cause of tooth decay, also arise from improper methods of teeth cleaning. Plaque formed in the teeth interacts with the sugar or starch residues from food intakes and will produce harmful acids that attack healthy teeth for about 20 minutes. As this condition prolongs, the tooth enamel slowly deteriorates to eventually lead to tooth decay and possible, tooth loss.

3. Gummy bears, tootsie rolls and other forms of sweets that are stickier in consistency are more harmful than sweets like chocolate bars due to their tendency to remain lodged in the hollows and gaps of our teeth, instead of being washed away by water intakes.

4. Sweets taken during meals are less likely to cause harm to the teeth because of increased saliva production. Saliva helps in neutralizing acids produced by the sugar as well as dilutes and rinses sticky substances.

5. Consuming sugary food for snacks causes the decay-causing acids to stay longer in the mouth. Chewing sugarless gum can be helpful to encourage saliva production that can immediately rinse way sugary food particles.

6. Cough drops, breath mints or mentholated candies are not as harmless as you think, when used as breath fresheners and substitutes for teeth cleaning. These forms of sweets tend to stay longer in the mouth and thus produce acids that subject the teeth to constant attack due to the interaction of bacteria and sugar in the mouth. According to dental experts, tooth decay is not a matter of how sweet the intake, but how long the sugar stays in the mouth and allow it to produce acids that cause distress to the teeth enamel.

7. Improper methods of cleaning the teeth can also lead to tooth decay. Over-aggressiveness in brushing the teeth also causes trauma to the gums and nerves found within. As a result, ligaments that hold teeth to the gums weaken and fray and eventually causes tooth loss. The ideal length of time for brushing the teeth is for about two minutes by using a soft bristled toothbrush.

8. Proper care and handling of toothbrush is also an important aspect of teeth cleaning procedures. For this purpose, the following should be noted:

Always store your toothbrush in an upright position allowing it to air dry before the next use.

If more than one toothbrush is stored in a holder, make sure that they are stored far apart from each other. Make sure your toothbrush is thoroughly rinsed when you are brushing your teeth, free from toothpaste and dirt residues after every use.

Do not store your toothbrush in airtight containers; such conditions allow microorganism to thrive.

If a member of a family is recuperating from a highly contagious disease, keep his toothbrush stored separately from those of other family members. Live bacteria or virus may still be present during recuperation and it would be best to prevent cross-contamination. Under no circumstances should toothbrush sharing be allowed.

Replace toothbrushes as often as possible since they become less effective as tools for teeth cleaning once they are frayed and worn out. The expected life of a toothbrush is only for three to four months, hence it is advisable to replace them by the time this period is up.

Aside from all of these, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which include the eating of balance diets as well as abstinence from cigarette smoking and excessive alcohol, promotes good oral health.

As a summary, teeth-cleaning is not just a matter of routine brushing acts but also pertains to the avoidance of certain foods that cause acid and plaque build up. These substances attack our teeth before the next teeth cleaning ritual is performed. Care should also be given to the methods of actual brushing and storing of the toothbrush to prevent any bacterial growth in our teeth cleaning implements. Good luck with brushing your teeth !

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