We all want to have the healthiest, most beautiful smiles possible, right? Houston Uptown Dentists works hard year-round to treat our patients to a high level of dental care. We want each patient who leaves our office to be just a little better than when they arrived.

You may not know it, but October is National Dental Hygiene Month. With this blog post we want to highlight some of the ways you can do your part to keep your smile looking its best, not only during October, but for a lifetime!

Brush Your Teeth For Two Minutes Twice Daily

Most of know we should brush our teeth every day, but how many of us do it twice a day? Or for a full two minutes each time? The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends two minutes because brushing is such a critical part of your at-home oral hygiene regimen. Brushing removes plaque and bacteria that can cause problems like cavities and gum disease.

Here are some pointers to help you get the most out of your brushing routine:

  • Buy a soft-bristle toothbrush with a head that fits the size of your mouth.
  • Divide your mouth into quadrants and brush each one for 30 seconds (upper outer, upper inner, lower outer, lower inner).
  • Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums.
  • Use short up-and-down strokes when brushing.
  • Be sure to brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.

To make sure you brush for a full two minutes, use a timer on your phone or watch. Good, thorough brushing pays huge dividends when it comes to maintaining your oral health and confidence.

Floss At Least Once a Day

We understand…no one really like to floss. However, flossing plays a key role in helping you maintain a healthy smile. Without flossing, you’re neglecting a full 40 percent of your teeth surfaces. Flossing will remove trapped food particles and plaque in between your teeth that your toothbrush can’t reach.

Here is the best way to floss:

  • Begin with a strand of floss that’s about 18 inches long.
  • Wrap most of the floss around your two middle fingers, leaving about two inches to work with.
  • Hold on to the floss with your thumbs and forefingers and work it in between each of your teeth.
  • Use up-and-down motions as well as back-and-forth to make sure that you reach any hidden food particles or plaque.

Regular flossing will help cut down on cavities and gum disease and can help you keep your teeth for a lifetime.

Use Mouthwash Daily

Even though you may brush and floss as recommended, you’re still not cleaning your entire mouth. Biofilm and plaque can live on your gums, tongue, and the roof of your mouth. That’s why it’s important to use a good-quality rinse or mouthwash every day.

Be sure to buy a rinse or mouthwash that kills germs but doesn’t contain any alcohol. Alcohol can have a detrimental effect on the saliva production in your mouth. You need sufficient saliva to help wash away food particles and debris from your teeth.

Always follow the directions on the package of your rinse, but a good rule is to rinse for at least 30 seconds to a minute. The result is that you’ll have a cleaner, fresher mouth.

Chew Sugarless Gum to Clean Your Teeth

Reliable clinical studies have concluded that chewing gum stimulates the production of saliva that is so crucial to keeping a healthy mouth. After you eat or snack, just pop in a piece of your favorite sugarless gum (Never sugared!) and chew it for at least 20 minutes.

Chewing sugarless gum will help maintain the proper levels of saliva in your mouth so your teeth remain healthy, plus it will improve the quality of your breath and help you avoid potentially embarrassing social interactions.

Visit Houston Uptown Dentists at Least Twice a Year

No matter how great you take care of your teeth at home, it’s still important to see your dentist every six months for a dental cleaning and exam. These routine checkups will allow us to catch and treat small dental problems before they have the chance to do major smile damage.

Plus, you’ll leave with teeth that look and feel squeaky clean – and you can only get that at the dentist’s office!

No matter what kind of problems we might find during your exam, our dental pros can take care of it for you. We offer a wide variety of dental services, including:

Celebrate National Dental Hygiene Month in Houston by taking great care of your smile. Call Houston Uptown Dentists at 832-463-1021 today to schedule your next checkup!