Back-to-school time brings routines and order to a more relaxed summer household. As you establish new routines for the day, don’t forget your or your child’s oral health!
The importance of establishing an oral hygiene routine
Work, school, activities, and family time are often part of busy lives. Some days, you may feel you have no time to spare, but your smile and your overall health depend on simple dental care habits, such as brushing and flossing.1 Developing a good oral health routine and sticking to it daily will prevent dental problems, such as tooth decay. In fact, cavities are one of the most prevalent diseases among children. But even adults benefit when they are mindful of their daily oral hygiene.
Start a routine and stick to it – First thing in the morning and last thing at night works well for most. There are no hard and fast rules as long as you are consistent to at least twice a day. Mouth bacteria accumulate overnight so brushing after you wake up removes the germs. Brushing before bedtime removes food particles and plaque from the day.
Choose a fluoride toothpaste – Fluoride helps fight against tooth decay and provides a protective barrier for your teeth.
Brush properly – Brush your teeth for a full two minutes, spend an equal amount of time in each quadrant of your mouth. You can watch a clock, set a timer, listen to a song or even sing a song in your head as you brush.
Floss once a day – There are many varieties of dental floss, including ready-to-use dental flossers that help make flossing easier for children or those adults with arthritis.
Consider using a mouthwash – Mouthwashes can help prevent tooth decay, reduce plaque, prevent or reduce gingivitis (an early stage of gum disease) and freshen breath.4
Visit the dentist at least twice a year – Even the best oral hygiene routines should include seeing the dentist regularly. A dentist can remove hardened calculus from teeth, look for cavities and are able to spot potential issues that could also affect your overall health.
By following these tips, you and your family are sure to have healthy smiles this school year and beyond.
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* All TruAssure dental plans, other than Basic and Preferred dental plans, are offered in association with the DenteMax Plus dental network arrangement, which includes participating dentists from the DenteMax, United Concordia and Connection dental networks. TruAssure Basic and Preferred dental plans for both group and individual members are offered in association with the DenteMax dental network.
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