Preventive Care

Preventive dental care, which includes daily brushing and flossing, is important throughout your life, whether you’re young or young at heart. By practicing good oral hygiene at home and scheduling regular checkups with Dr. Deese at our Fairhope dental office, you can help keep your smile bright and healthy for many years to come.

Why is brushing and flossing so important?

It is assumed that removing plaque (the layer of bacteria that forms on the teeth) will help prevent gum disease (gingivitis) and tooth decay (dental caries). Gum disease, which appears as red, bleeding gums, may eventually contribute to tooth loss. Untreated tooth decay may also result in tooth loss.

To prevent cavities, you need to remove plaque, the transparent layer of bacteria that coats the teeth. The best way to do this is by brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once a day. Brushing also stimulates the gums, which helps to keep them healthy and prevent gum disease.

Tooth brushing removes some plaque, but cannot reach between the teeth, where gum disease and tooth decay are common. Flossing helps to remove plaque where the toothbrush can't reach.

Traditional vs. Electric Toothbrushes

Electric toothbrushes are better in that the amount of energy exerted can clean and reach areas that a conventional brush can’t. If you have sensitive gums, are elderly, have trouble properly brushing, or are looking to improve your brushing game and oral hygiene, electric toothbrushes are definitely for you.

That said, with standard toothbrushes or electric, the only results you will see are the ones that you enact yourself. If you aren’t brushing for at least two minutes two times a day, flossing regularly and using proper ADA-approved toothpaste, you won’t see results regardless of the type of toothbrush you use.

Don’t forget to visit our Fairhope dental office for twice-yearly cleanings and checkups with Dr. Deese. We’ll make sure your home care routine is effective and provide any support you need to improve your oral health.

If it's been six months since your last dental checkup, then it's time to contact our practice and schedule your next appointment!

Printable instructions >

 

Brushing Instructions
  • brushing diagram

    Brushing: Step 1

    Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gum.

  • brushing diagram

    Brushing: Step 2

    Brush gently in a circular motion.

  • brushing diagram

    Brushing: Step 3

    Brush the outer, inner, and chewing surfaces of each tooth.

  • brushing diagram

    Brushing: Step 4

    Use the tip of your brush for the inner surface of your front teeth.

 

Flossing Instructions
  • flossing diagram

    Flossing: Step 1

    Wind about 18 inches of floss around your fingers as shown. Most of it should be wrapped around one finger, and the other finger takes it up as the floss is used.

  • flossing diagram

    Flossing: Step 2

    Use your thumbs and forefingers to guide about one inch of floss between your teeth.

  • flossing diagram

    Flossing: Step 3

    Holding the floss tightly, gently saw it between your teeth. Then curve the floss into a C-shape against one tooth and gently slide it beneath your gums.

  • flossing diagram

    Flossing: Step 4

    Slide the floss up and down, repeating for each tooth.

 

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