Quick & Easy Ways to Prevent Dental Problems

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Toothache, abscess, gum disease….. ouch – these don’t sound like fun, do they? Dental problems are painful, unhealthy and costly to fix and you don’t have time for that! You want the best for your family and yourself, so how do you prevent these things?

Here are my tips for helping to prevent dental problems and I will let you in on a few ‘trade secrets’ by letting you know what dentists recommend and use.

1) Brush your teeth (and gums!) twice a day
Clean your teeth twice a day, preferably with toothpaste that contains fluoride. Good technique and spending enough time brushing is more important than the number of times a day you brush – quality triumphs quantity. My personal favourite toothbrush is the Oral B electric toothbrushes e.g. Oral B vitality or the Systema toothbrushes – I love these, they are so soft!

More info about electric toothbrushes> click here

My favourite toothpaste is the Minions™ Cavity Protection Sparkling Mint Gel; although obviously marketed to children it is adult strength. I like it as it isn’t as ‘minty’ or ‘strong’ taste as some of the others.

2) Floss
I know it is something you like to hate, but doing this at least once a day can make such a difference. Flossing helps prevent decay in the 35% of your tooth surface that your toothbrush will never reach.

Despite what the toothbrush advertisements say about them being able to get between the teeth – it is a lie.

Interdental brushes are good for people with periodontal disease or big gaps between your teeth, but don’t replace flossing. I personally don’t like water flossers, as they aren’t strong enough to remove plaque; but they are better than nothing.

I recommend Oral B waxed floss. More info about flossing > click here

3) Brush your tongue
There are lots of bacteria on your tongue and using a tongue scraper, particularly at night, will help reduce bad breath in the morning. The tongue cleaners on toothbrushes aren’t effective enough, you really are better off with a proper tongue scraper such as the Orafresh tongue cleaner.

4) Look at your diet and watch ‘That Sugar Film’
There are sugars in pretty much every food we eat, the more ‘processed’ the food the more likely there are going to be sugars in it. It doesn’t have to be just sugar that causes decay, things such as fermentable carbohydrates in bread, pasta and potato chips can do just as much damage.

Frequent snacking causes more damage than confining eating to meal times, as the teeth are in contact with sugar for longer period of time.

5) Don’t smoke – please
Not only does it cause cancers and all sorts of nasty things, it is terrible for your dental health. Smoking and good dental health is impossible, no matter how well you take care of your teeth.

6) Wear your dental appliances such as retainers and splint/ night guard.
If you have had orthodontic treatment/ braces – wear your retainers, otherwise your teeth are going to move and you WILL be going through the whole process again.

If you play sport, wear a mouth guard; a custom one made by a dentist is very comfortable and your only protection against dental injuries. The cost of damage to a single front tooth (and these are always the ones that get damaged), could add up to at least $25000 over a lifetime for repairs/ replacement, not to mention pain, time off work and cosmetic issues it causes. I actually see injuries most often in people who play netball and basketball, so no sport is immune to this.

Teeth grinding and clenching can do a lot of damage to teeth. Most of the damage usually happens in your sleep and in most cases, a splint or guard is the only protection against tooth wear and tooth fracture.

7) Regular dental check ups
Most dental problems are painless and you don’t feel anything, until things are too late. Your dentist is your partner in good dental health, they can advise you on how to best care for your teeth and help you prevent dental problems.


Are you overdue for your dental checkup or just getting started on the path to dental health, book an appointment or contact us for more info.

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