Oral hygiene is the practice of keeping the mouth clean and is considered the primary means of prevention of dental cavities, gingivitis, periodontitis, and other dental disorders. It also helps to prevent bad breath (halitosis). When kept clean, teeth will have minimal or no plaque deposits and the gums will be pink and firm.
Pediatric cleanings generally are completed in 30 minutes or less. Today’s dental technology is highly toned, effective and nearly 100% pain free. During a cleaning, your child will receive a fluoride treatment to help strengthen tooth enamel. With your help, when your child practices a daily dental hygiene routine of brushing and flossing, both of you are helping the dentist achieve strong, healthy and beautifully white teeth for your child, both now and into the future.
Oral hygiene requires both personal and professional care and it begins in infancy.
? Did You Know...
- Dental cavities are the most common chronic childhood disease.
- Dental sealants and fluoride treatments can prevent 95% of cavities.
- Oral disease is 5 times more common than asthma.
- Oral disease is 7 times more common than hay fever.
- 51 million school hours are lost to dental illness.
- Oral disease can lead to problems in eating, speaking, and learning.
Tips for Good Oral Hygiene in your Infant
Even before teeth begin to erupt, thoroughly clean your infant’s gums after each feeding with a water-soaked infant washcloth or gauze pad to stimulate the gum tissue and remove food.
When the baby’s teeth begin to erupt, brush them gently with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush using a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste. A small amount of fluoridated toothpaste will help to inhibit decay.
Discourage thumb and pacifier sucking as soon as possible. Most children stop by age two but prolonged sucking can create bite problems, crooked teeth, or even constriction of the maxilla, the upper jaw.
At age two or three, you can begin to teach your child proper brushing techniques. But remember, you will need to follow up with brushing and gentle flossing until age seven or eight, when the child has the dexterity to do it alone.
Schedule your child’s first oral hygiene appointment, when they reach their 1st birthday. We’re sure that your child’s first experience will be a very positive experience!
Tips for Good Oral Hygiene in your Teens and Adolescents
Good nutrition and oral hygiene care, practiced at home and including good brushing and flossing, are particularly important during the teen years. As with younger children, great supplements for the prevention of cavities are dental sealants and fluoride treatments, which can eliminate 95% of all cavities right into adulthood.
Periodontal disease can be a threat to teens even more than adults. Recent survey results show that bleeding gums were most prevalent among adolescents, with three-fourths of 13 to 17 year olds reporting gums that bled. This can be prevented by deep cleanings with our hygienists and a good brushing and flossing program.
Be sure to brush thoroughly after meals, whenever possible, and floss daily. Busy schedules and activities can encourage snacking. That is why choosing a proper diet will help you to maintain and preserve your teeth.
If you have braces, pay special attention to keeping spaces between the teeth and arch wires clean by using floss threaders. Orthodontic toothbrushes are specially designed to make cleaning teeth and braces easier.
If you participate in contact sports, you may want to check with your coach about a “Tooth Preservation Kit” or ask us about having a mouth guard fitted during your oral care visit. Mouth guards assist in providing protection against dental injuries.
Call to schedule a cleaning and checkup with any one of our well experienced and very gentle dental hygienists.