Oral hygiene refers to the care of your mouth, including your teeth and the soft tissues. The goal of oral hygiene is to keep your teeth clean and your mouth healthy. Good oral hygiene habits at home, such as brushing and flossing your teeth, combined with professional dental care, such as routine dental cleanings, can help you keep your natural teeth in place for your lifetime.
Benefits of Oral Hygiene
Personal and professional oral hygiene offers many benefits:
- Teeth for life. The ultimate goal of oral hygiene is to help you keep your natural teeth healthy and functional throughout your lifetime.
- Fresh breath. Oral hygiene can prevent bad breath by keeping bacteria levels down and preventing infection.
- Aesthetically pleasing smile. A clean mouth containing your natural teeth makes a healthier looking smile.
- Healthy gums. Oral hygiene prevents gum disease by removing plaque from the teeth before bacteria can infect the gums.
- Lower risk of oral cancer. Personal and professional oral hygiene can lower your risk of developing oral cancer. Regular oral exams provide early detection of oral cancer, which can lead to better outcomes for patients.
We offer the following oral hygiene services.
- Comprehensive Evaluation / Oral Examination. Every 6 months you should have a comprehensive evaluation and oral examination performed by your dentist. The purpose is to evaluate your oral health and identify any concerns that need to be addressed, such as gum disease or signs of oral cancer.
- Dental Cleaning. A thorough dental cleaning should accompany your twice yearly oral exams. The purpose of a dental cleaning is to remove plaque from the teeth that is missed by brushing and flossing at home.
- Scaling and Root Planing. Gum disease may need to be treated with a specialized pair of procedures. Scaling is the process of removing calculus (hardened plaque) from the roots of the teeth below the gum line. Root planing then smooths the surface of the roots so that the gum tissue can reattach more securely, eliminating gaps or pockets for plaque to get under the gums and cause infection.
- Dental Sealants. Teeth that have deep cusps or crevices are at a higher risk of decay. Dental sealants can be applied to the teeth to fill in these areas to prevent bacteria from gathering and causing cavities.
- Custom Night Guards. Teeth grinding is a common habit that can do damage to your teeth and cause other negative symptoms, such as TMJ disorder and headaches. We can create a custom night guard for you to wear while you sleep that will protect your teeth and absorb the impact from grinding or clenching your teeth.
Why Choose Glassman Dental Care?
Regular dental check-ups are very necessary, because we believe it is the best policy to treat problems as they arise, rather than allow them to progress to the point where more complex treatment is required. Prevention is better than cure. An integral part of oral health and periodontal (gum) care is professional oral hygiene, which is provided by our highly qualified team of oral hygienists.
We also teach our patients how to properly take care of their teeth in between check-ups. This involves more than just twice daily brushing, but also the correct brushing and flossing techniques. We are also happy to recommend dental hygiene products and even offer samples for you to try out at home.
Frequently Asked Questions About Oral Hygiene
How often should I brush and floss my teeth?
For most patients we recommend brushing twice a day and flossing once a day. If you have a higher risk of tooth decay or gum disease, we may recommend brushing and flossing more often, such as after every meal.
How often do I need to go to the dentist?
Most patients should see us every 6 months for routine oral exams and dental cleanings. If you have struggled with severe gum disease, we may recommend periodontal maintenance more frequently, such as every other month or quarterly.
What can I do to keep my breath fresh?
Practicing good oral hygiene habits, including daily care at home and regular professional dental care, can help you keep your breath fresh. If you still struggle with bad breath or halitosis, we may be able to recommend a mouthwash or other products to help keep it in check.
Are routine dental visits covered by insurance?
Most dental insurance plans cover two routine dental appointments each year for cleanings and oral exams. These appointments must be at least 6 months apart and may or may not require a copay depending on your plan. Contact your insurance provider to inquire about the specifics of your coverage.