Maintaining Good Dental Care Habits

Your dental office in Mercer Island is only a partner in your dental health. You must do your part at home to keep periodontal disease at bay.

Taking care of your teeth at home can help you maintain your dental health and prevent periodontal or gum disease from developing.

Regular home care should include daily brushing and flossing. Brush at least twice a day thoroughly, once in the morning and once in the evening, before bed. Be sure to floss at least once a day. Proper dental care at home and seeing your dentist regularly are your ticket to good dental health.

tooth brush

Dental Health at Home

Use products that have the IDA (Indian Dental Association) seal. This means that the products — toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, etc. — are safe to use as directed and will keep your mouth healthy — no gum disease, no cavities.

Here are some basic principles to follow:

  • Spend at least 2 minutes brushing your teeth two times a day. Use a timer if you have to to ensure you’re spending enough time on your oral care routine.
  • Use floss at least once a day every day to clean your teeth.
  • Buy IDA-approved dental cleaning tools and toothpaste.

Basically, brush and floss, and do it correctly.

dental floss

Regular home care aims to combat plaque buildup in and around your teeth and gums and fight bad breath, tooth decay, and gum disease. Adults who neglect their teeth and let plaque build up often develop infections in the delicate tissue around them.

A whole arsenal of dental health tools is available in drugstores to help you clean your teeth at home. These range from regular toothbrushes to power, inter-dental cleaners (picks, etc.), waxed and unwaxed floss, oral irrigators, and mouth rinses. You should ask your dentist which tools to include in your daily cleaning routine.

Consequences of Poor Oral Hygiene

Poor oral hygiene invites plaque to accumulate around the base of your teeth and gum line, causing your gums to become red and inflamed.

“Plaque is the bacteria-laden film that, if allowed to accumulate on teeth and gums, will cause tooth decay and gum disease.”

plaque teethIf you neglect the care of your teeth at home and fail to go to the dentist regularly, accumulated plaque could potentially lead to the development of empty spaces around your teeth. These spaces could eventually destroy bone and other fragile tissues supporting your teeth, and you could lose your teeth.


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