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Healthy Teeth for the Whole Family

Posted on May 24th, 2013 by Dr. Nikoo Daftary

It is important to start healthy oral habits early. Here are tips for you and your family to have healthy teeth for life:

  • Start children early – One in four children develops signs of tooth decay before they start school. At the sign of the first tooth, you should start caring for your child’s teeth. Wipe the teeth with a cloth or soft brush, and at age two, try to get your child to start brushing themselves.
  • Brush twice a day and floss daily – Gum disease and tooth decay aren’t just problems for older people. Three-fourths of teenagers have gums that bleed. Replace toothbrushes three to four times a year, and members of the family with braces should use specialized brushes.
  • Rinse after meals – Rinsing with an antibacterial rinse can prevent decay and gum problems. Chewing sugar-free gum can also protect by increasing salivation, which naturally washes away bacteria.
  • Use a mouth guard – Children’s sports can be brutal. Make sure your kids are wearing mouth guards not just for organized sports, but for recreational sports as well, such as skateboarding or rollerblading.
  • Don’t smoke! – Other than the obvious risks smoking brings, tobacco also stains teeth and increases risks of gum disease and oral cancer.
  • Eat smart – A healthy diet is essential to healthy teeth and gums. Well-balanced meals with whole foods will provide the nutrients you and your family need. Sugary foods erode tooth enamel and raise acid levels.
  • Make your appointment! – Schedule biannual dental check-ups for all members of your family. Your dentist removes plaque that even brushing and flossing can’t reach, and spots early signs of decay, gum disease and oral cancer.

 
 
Courtesy of WebMD
http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/healthy-teeth-tips?page=2

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