As dental professionals, we are well-equipped to repair and restore teeth if necessary. However, for long-term oral health, it is preferable to save natural teeth whenever possible.
Today, our team at Hawaii Pacific Dental Group in East Honolulu explores treatments in family dentistry and discusses a few tips to maintain a healthy smile for life. Oral healthcare is an investment that can offer long-term benefits and an improved quality of life.
Attend Regular Dental Cleanings and Examinations
Professional dental care is essential to long-lasting oral health. The American Dental Association recommends routine teeth cleanings set at intervals determined by your doctor.
For many patients, six-month cleanings and exams are sufficient. However, those who are naturally predisposed to tooth decay, gum disease, or other oral health problems will benefit from more frequent visits.
A professional cleaning can address difficult areas that are unreachable with brushing and flossing alone. During your appointment, your hygienist will remove plaque, tartar, food particles, and other debris from the surfaces of the teeth. This will keep bacteria levels down and help you maintain healthy teeth and gums.
Your doctor will also perform a thorough assessment of your teeth, oral soft tissues, jaw joints, and surrounding structures. This allows him or her to detect any problems in the early stages before they worsen.
Practice Good Oral Health Habits
Dental cleanings and examinations are crucial, but how you care for your teeth and gums between visits is just as important. As a general rule, patients should brush at least two times daily and floss once a day. We also recommend using an ADA-approved antibacterial mouthwash to keep your mouth healthy and feeling fresh.
Eat a Healthy, Well-Balanced Diet
It is no secret that sugary, starchy foods can increase the risk of cavity formation. While good oral hygiene habits can help counteract this potential problem, it is also preferable to consume these foods in moderation.
A healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and unprocessed foods can help reduce the risk of tooth decay. In addition, we also recommend brushing after every meal if possible. If this is not feasible, swishing with water after you eat can help rinse away food particles and bacteria.
Avoid Excessive Tobacco and Alcohol Use
It should come as no surprise that smoking is detrimental to your oral health. Because tobacco products shrink the blood vessels and capillaries, excessive use can actually impede the body’s natural healing process.
Additionally, excessive alcohol consumption can significantly increase the risk for oral health issues, as these beverages can dry out the mouth. Those who consistently use tobacco and alcohol together exponentially increase their risk for developing oral cancer.
Determine Your Personalized Oral Healthcare Regimen
Because every patient is unique, each oral healthcare regimen should be, too. For many individuals, brushing and flossing is all that is required for optimal oral health.
However, depending on your specific situation, there are other things, such as floss threaders, dental picks, interproximal brushes, and water flossers, that can serve personalized dental needs. During your appointment at our practice, we can help you design a customized routine that can keep your teeth and gums healthy for years to come.
Contact Our Practice to Learn More
Caring for your smile is one of the most important investments you can make. To learn more about the services offered at our practice, contact us online or call us at (808) 955-0008.