February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, so here are some oral health tips for children and adults alike:
- Brush your teeth. It might sound elementary, but remembering to brush your teeth twice a day is a good way to fight build up on your teeth. Use a soft bristled toothbrush with fluoridated toothpaste. Remember to replace your toothbrush regularly – dentists recommend replacing it every three or four months.
- Flossing your teeth is the best way to clean all tooth surfaces. Remember to get between each tooth individually.
- Use a mouthwash after brushing or flossing to rinse away any remaining particles and to help prevent halitosis (bad breath).
- Avoid tobacco and limit alcohol. Not only can these lead to teeth yellowing, but mouth and throat cancer.
- Visit your dentist every six months. A good cleaning by a dental hygienist will help protect your teeth and your dentist will examine for any serious problems, such as gum disease, cavities and other oral diseases. Oral health can also be a good indicator of your overall health. You can find a dentist in your area through the American Dental Association.
Need more information on oral health? Don’t forget to stop by the Medline Plus information page for a collection of articles on caring for your teeth and mouth. Another good place for information is the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s Division of Oral Health, which provides an A to Z listing of dental health topics. Also, the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine has a Simple Steps to Better Dental Health site that is full of consumer-friendly information on daily oral heath care, preventative measures and other dental health topics.