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Posted on: October 15, 2020
Dental Care Basics
Understanding the basics of dental care is essential to promote the healthiest teeth and gums for your entire family. At our dental office, we offer practical help in managing your at-home dental regimen and your routine care in our office. We work with you to provide the best and most practical solutions for you and every member of your family. We are proud to offer comprehensive dental care in Yonkers.
Our dentists will work with you to make sure that you understand how to care for your teeth at home and ensure the best care for your teeth and gums in our office. Some of the most important basics of dental care include the following activities:
Brushing your teeth at least twice daily and preferably after every meal
Flossing your teeth to remove food debris from between teeth
Scheduling regular appointments with our office for checkups, exams and teeth cleaning
Receiving prompt treatment for any injuries or dental conditions that could develop
Dealing With Plaque and Calculus
Plaque is a sticky substance that adheres to your teeth and gums. It is produced when bacteria react to sugar and starches in the foods you eat. The bacteria release acids that break down the sugar and carbohydrates to create a substance that can slowly eat away at the enamel of your teeth. This can lead to cavities and tooth decay. Regular brushing and flossing are the first line of defense against plaque and its negative effects.
If plaque is not removed promptly and effectively, it can harden to form a substance called calculus or tartar. Calculus, if left untreated, will often cause irritation of the gums that can develop into gum disease. Regular teeth cleaning is the only safe and certain way to remove calculus from teeth and to protect yourself and your family against the serious effects of periodontal disease now and in the future.
Early Warning Signs of Gum Disease
According to dental experts, about 75 percent of all adults in the United States will suffer from some form of gum disease during their lives. Gingivitis and periodontal disease are the primary reason for bleeding gums among dental patients. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease and is usually indicated by the following symptoms:
- Swelling of the gums, especially when combined with tenderness
- The previously mentioned bleeding of the gums after flossing and brushing
- Redness or a purple discoloration of the gums
- Loosening of the teeth
- Bad breath that persists for more than a few days
- Changes in your bite
Plaque and tartar are often contributing causes for both gingivitis and for gum disease. Regular teeth cleaning appointments will typically reduce the risk of gingivitis for patients and will help to keep your mouth healthier and cleaner.
Taking steps to address issues with gingivitis during the early stages will often allow you and your dentist to reverse the effects of this condition and to prevent it from progressing into advanced periodontal disease. Our dental office will work with you to provide you with a treatment plan that will be effective in dealing with this issue and in helping you to look and feel your best now and in the future.
If you or a member of your family does develop periodontal disease, our team of dentists will work with you to create the most effective plan for addressing both the symptoms and the long-term effects of periodontal disease. We can help you manage gum disease to minimize its impact on the health of your teeth and gums.
Cavities and Tooth Decay
Cavities, also known as caries, are holes in the outer enamel of your teeth. These dental conditions are often caused by plaque bacteria that eat away at this layer of your teeth. This can cause several symptoms, including toothaches, sensitivity to hot, cold or sweet foods and drinks, pain when biting or chewing and even visible discoloration or holes in your teeth.
Scheduling regular dental appointments and examinations will help you and your family to deal with these issues quickly and effectively. Fillings are the most used treatment for cavities. If serious structural damage has been done to the tooth, a crown may be required to protect it from further injury.
Best Practices for Caring for Your Teeth at Home
A few simple steps will typically produce the best results in caring for your teeth at home. Some of the most important activities to remember will include the following:
- Brush with a soft toothbrush or electric toothbrush at least twice daily after meals to remove most plaque from the surface of your teeth.
- Brush your tongue to reduce concentrations of bacteria in your mouth for fewer cavities and fresher breath.
- Dental experts recommend replacing your toothbrush once every three months, after any period of illness or when it begins to look worn, whichever comes first.
- Floss at least once daily to remove plaque and food particles from between teeth.
- When done properly, flossing daily can help ith bad breath, decay and more.
- Eating healthier and avoiding excessive sugar and starchy foods can help you keep your teeth healthier.
- Antibacterial mouthwash can also be combined with regular brushing and flossing to produce the best protection for your teeth and gums.
- Choose an antibacterial mouthwash and swish it around in your mouth after brushing for about 30 seconds or more.
Regular Dental Appointments Are Fundamental
During your regular dental exams, our team will check for signs of bruxism and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues. We will also perform an oral cancer screening to check if any of the warning signs of this condition are present. There are approximately 49,700 new cases of oral cancer per year according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Catching oral cancer early is incredibly important. Along with twice-a-year teeth cleaning appointments, regular exams can help you protect your health and that of your family members.
Our dental team will work with you to provide expert recommendations on how to care for your teeth. We can help you manage basic dental care needs in the most effective and practical way possible for you and your family in Yonkers.
Keeping Your Teeth Healthy for Life
If you want to begin your journey to better dental health, call us to make your first appointment with our dental team. We look forward to the chance to provide you with the best care and dental services in Yonkers.