Prevention & Hygiene
• Brush your teeth twice a day-in the morning and before bed-and floss once a day. This removes plaque, which can lead to damaged teeth, gums, and surrounding bone.
• Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps prevent tooth decay and cavities. Ask your dentist if you need a mouthwash that contains fluoride or one with ingredients that fight plaque. Look for toothpastes that have been approved by the American Dental Association.
• Avoid foods that contain a lot of sugar. Sugar helps plaque grow.
• Avoid frequent snacking and/or drinking carbohydrates.
• Practice tongue cleaning. You can use a tongue cleaner or a soft-bristle toothbrush, stroking in a back-to-front direction. Tongue cleaning is particularly important for people who smoke or whose tongues are coated or deeply grooved.
• Schedule regular trips to the dentist in order to catch possible dental issue early, rather than waiting until you feel the pain.