Maintaining oral health is a lifelong task that requires daily effort and upkeep. The importance of developing a proper oral health and maintenance routine has been proven to benefit not only your teeth and gums, but your overall health as well. The oral-systemic health link has gotten much more attention in news and literature, and there is good reason for it. The oral-systemic health link refers to the connection between oral health and overall systemic health, highlighting how the condition of your mouth can impact your overall well-being. Research has increasingly shown that oral health problems, such as gum disease and tooth decay, can have implications for various systemic conditions and diseases throughout the body. Let us at Swanson Dental Group in Reno, NV help explain what you can be doing to optimize your oral health.
Prevention is key! At Swanson Dental Group, we are focused on preventive dentistry over restorative dentistry whenever possible. Although incidents like trauma and infection will always be present in dentistry, diseases such as tooth decay and gum disease can be significantly mitigated with preventive dental practices. So why should you care? Because the cost and complexity of practicing regular preventive dental routines pales in comparison to the much higher expenses of restorative dental procedures. When there is a history of dental neglect, patients will require restorative dental treatment. These treatments may involve fillings, dental extractions, periodontal scaling and root planing, dental crowns, root canal procedures, etc., all of which can be time consuming, expensive and complex. The minimal time and effort involved in practicing good daily oral hygiene habits is well worth it!
Steps For At-Home Preventive Dentistry
Incorporating effective at-home dental care practices is crucial for maintaining optimal oral health and preventing dental issues. Using the proper techniques to take care of your teeth by using an antimicrobial mouthwash, limiting sugary and acidic foods and beverages, as well as quitting smoking, are just some tips to help further promote good oral health. By following our simple yet essential at-home tips for good oral hygiene, you can safeguard your oral health, prevent dental problems, and maintain a beautiful, healthy smile.
Preventive dentistry includes activities that are performed both at home and at the dental office. At home, we recommend:
- Brushing at least twice each day using proper brushing techniques. We recommend brushing for 2 minutes with a soft bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. For more info on proper brushing techniques, see our article “Am I Brushing Too Hard?”
- Flossing your teeth daily. This can help plaque and food partical removal, prevention of gum disease, cavity prevention, fresher breath and overall healthier gums.
- Brushing or scraping your tongue daily. Your tongue can harbor bad bacteria, causing a multitude of issues in the mouth. Brushing or scraping your tongue daily has a lot of benefits including removal of bacteria and debris, improved oral hygiene, enhanced taste sensation and fresher breath.
- Rinsing with mouthwash. Mouthwash can reach areas that you may have missed with brushing and flossing, promotes overall gum health and adds an extra layer of protection to your teeth.
In-Office Preventive Dental Care
At our dental office, a range of procedures are available to promote preventive dentistry and maintain optimal oral health. Regular dental check-ups and cleanings are essential to detect early signs of dental problems like tooth decay, gum disease, and oral infections. Dr. Swanson may perform comprehensive examinations, including dental X-rays, to identify hidden issues. Additionally, dental sealants can be applied to protect the chewing surfaces of the back teeth from decay. Professional fluoride treatments help strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. By embracing these dentist office procedures for preventive dentistry, you can proactively care for your oral health, prevent future complications or health conditions, and enjoy a confident smile.
Some preventive services that Dr. Swanson may recommend at our dental office include:
- A minimum of 2 professional cleanings each year with our dental hygienist. Some patients may require additional dental cleanings, depending on their individual needs
- Yearly checkup exams and x-rays
- Application of fluoride varnish, as needed
- Placement of dental sealants, as needed
- Fabrication of a night guard or mouthguard, as needed
Ready To Take The Next Steps For Your Oral Health?
Maximizing the benefits of preventive dentistry and preventive dental services begins with taking responsibility for your oral health. We are here to help you achieve optimal oral health and overall well-being, and your everyday commitment to good oral health practices is a critical part of that. By putting our recommendations for dentistry services into regular practice, we can better prevent gum disease and tooth decay, detect dental problems early, and minimize costly dental treatments. It’s never too late to start developing good habits to improve your dental health. Give us a call or stop by our Reno dental office if there is anything we can do to help!