Dental Tips 101: Back to Basics for the New Year

As the calendar resets itself for the New Year, I think it’s a great time to review basic dental care. Whether you’re a Los Angeles area resident who has recently had a cosmetic dental treatment that you want to maintain or simply want to take the best care of your teeth possible, the most important thing you can do is to keep a consistent, daily dental routine.

Here are my tips for proper teeth maintenance:

-Brush teeth regularly. Always use a soft brush. Even though you may think that a hard brush will do a better job, it doesn’t. In fact, hard brushes destroy teeth. Typically, manual users spend only 24-60 seconds brushing–that’s not enough! Use a manual toothbrush for three to five minutes. Or with a power brush like Sonicare (which is what I use), two minutes get the job done.

-Use a simple yet effective brushing technique:

1) Hold the brush at a 45 degree angle against your gums.

2) Rotate the brush gently in small, circular motions.

3) Brush the outer surfaces of each tooth on both the upper and lower arches.

4) Repeat on the inside and chewing surfaces of all teeth.

-Floss regularly. Watch me discuss how and why to floss properly on The Doctors TV show: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52zQ0REyR0Y&list=UU9cD910PBI7upPIufL4N0zg&index=2&feature=plcp

-See your dentist regularly.

-For fresh breath, I recommend the BreathRx brush and floss, scrape and rinse regimen. After brushing, scrape the tongue with a BreathRx Tongue Scraper to remove bad breath-causing bacteria. Move it from the back of the tongue toward the front, sweeping bacteria out of the mouth. Rinse with water and an alcohol-free mouthwash like BreathRx.

Easy, right? It still amazes me how many people neglect these simple things, inviting a host of dental problems that could have been avoided.

Use these dental hygiene tips to get a fresh start to a Happy New Year!