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Pro Tips for Dental Care

• Proper brushing technique makes all the difference. Dentist agree that using a soft brush with rounded nylon bristles is best. Take care to brush in gentle circular motions at a 45-degree angel to your gum line. Remember to brush for at least two minutes, twice a day, and make a mental note to cover each area of your mouth equally. 


• Flossing may hurt and seem unimportant, but neglecting to do it can lead to gum disease, which in turn can affect more than just your mouth. You might not appreciate the time you spend flossing, but gum disease can lead to heart disease, and can even be a sign of uncontrolled diabetes. So try to floss, your body will thank you. Persistent Bleeding gums shuld be evaluated by a dentist. 


• Keep hydrated. Having a drymouth can increase the risk of tooth decay, so make sure to drink plenty of water. 


• Soda, whether diet, sugar or otherwise, should be avoided whenever possible. Due to the high acid content, most carbonated beverages can weaken and soften enamel. If kicking the habit proves difficult, at least remember to use a fluoride rinse, as this will help strengthen enamel. 


• Oral cancer is more common after the age of 40, so don't neglect your appointment. Possible signs include painless lesions and unusual swelling or sores in the mouth. 


• Bone loss is one of the leading reasons people lose teeth. So remember to include enough calcium and vitamin D into your diet to help maintain strong bones. 


• Avoid grinding and clenching your teeth (bruxism). Usually intensified by stress, grinding and clenching can cause the chipping and even cracking of teeth. Bruxism can also lead to gingival inflammation, phantom tooth pain or TMJ discomfort. Be aware of your habits, and if you notice a potential problem, ask your dentist for a mouth guard. Stress-management techniques can also be a potential solution. Speak with Dr. Hassell or Dr. Finegan how a bite guard may help eliviate your symptoms.


• Women: being pregnant is not an excuse to put off a dentist appointment. In fact, pregnancy produces higher levels of estrogenand progesterone; potentially resulting in puffy, tender gums that are susceptible ot minor infections. Having your teeth cleaned will reduce the bacteria that cause gingivitis often associated with pregnancy.