One of the best ways to ensure healthy teeth and gums is with a good home care program. Proper brushing and flossing is the one way you can make sure you are doing what you can to protect your mouth. Proper brushing consists of about three to five minutes of concentrated brushing. A quick brush may make your mouth feel fresh, but will do very little to remove the plaque that normally develops during the course of the day. Be sure to cover all areas of the teeth, inside, outside on the biting surfaces and along the gum line as well. Since plaque is the substance responsible for tooth decay, a good brushing at least twice a day will help to prevent tooth decay. Plaque also has germs, which irritate the gums. Because plaque forms every twelve hours brushing twice a day is very important in order to prevent the plaque from turning into an even more irritating substance known as tartar.

Once tartar has formed on the teeth your dentist can only remove it. A soft round bristled toothbrush is the best to neither use since it won’t scrub away the enamel on your teeth nor irritate the gums. Gently massage your gums while brushing, this helps to clean them as well as increasing circulation in the area which is helpful in the prevention of gum disease. A good home care program which consists of brushing and flossing upon rising, before going to bed and after every meal, along with regular visits to your family dentist for a check up and cleaning will certainly help you in keeping your teeth and gums healthy.

One of the major causes of tooth loss today is due to periodontal disease or gingivitis as it is commonly called. Gum disease is caused by tartar. Tartar is what plaque turns into when it is not removed. One of the most difficult areas from which to remove plaque is in between the teeth. Because plaque turns into tartar literally overnight it is very important to floss twice a day in order to maintain healthy teeth and gums. Unfortunately because flossing seems tedious and time consuming few people floss as often as they should. A good time to floss is while watching TV. Once you get the hang of flossing, you don’t need a mirror to se what you are doing.

When flossing be careful not to snap the floss up through the teeth as you can cut your gums that way. Use a gentle sawing motion to work the floss between the teeth, when you reach the gum line curve the floss against the wall of the tooth to remove the plaque. If your gums bleed initially do not be alarmed. If you have not been flossing regularly the gums need to be conditioned. Tenderness after flossing the first several times is normal as well. Warm saltwater rinses will help to relieve this tenderness. Bleeding and tender gums are an indication of gum disease, if these symptoms persist after one week of daily flossing is sure to contact your dentist for proper treatment. Periodontal disease will not go away by itself and can cause serious problems in the mouth due to bone loss and resulting loss of teeth. A good home care program along with routine dental visits will certainly do much to ensure a lifelong healthy smile.