Most people have heard it before—you go to a dentist's office for a cleaning and are told that your teeth or gums could be in better shape. It can be really frustrating to hear this if you're already brushing and flossing regularly, but the reality is many people who follow a good pattern of dental hygiene habits still miss some spots. If you don't want to hear that your teeth could use a boost the next time you head to the dentist, try this easy tip.
The easiest way to tell at home if you're doing a good job with your dental hygiene is to buy some plaque disclosing tablets. These tablets contain a dye agent that adheres to plaque on your teeth and gums. They're often used for children, but adults can use them too to see what parts of their teeth aren't getting as clean as they should be.
If you've never seen these tablets before, head to your local pharmacy and look in the dental section. If you still can't find them, give your dentist a call—they may have some for sale or can tell you where you may be able to find them.
Using plaque disclosing tablets is easy. All you really need to do is chew them up and ensure that they get evenly chewed across all your teeth.
To ensure that your teeth are getting clean after you brush and floss, first perform your dental hygiene maintenance. Don't try to do a better job than you usually do—just go with whatever you normally do, as this will be the best way to indicate if you're usually doing a good job or not.
Once you've flossed, brushed, and rinsed away the remaining toothpaste, open up a tablet and chew it carefully. It's okay if you swallow some of it, but try to chew the tablet until nothing's left.
Once it's chewed up, look in the mirror. Any parts of your teeth or gums that haven't had their plaque cleared away will appear red or pink. Not to worry; this effect is temporary, and you can brush your teeth again to wash it away.
If you have red showing up on your teeth, there are a few things you can do to reduce your buildup of plaque when you care for your teeth everyday.
First off, make sure that you're brushing and flossing correctly. You should always brush in small circles with light pressure in order to get the bristles evenly across and between your teeth. In addition, your floss should always be held taut and pulled tightly against the edges of all of your teeth. Just going between the teeth won't be enough to get all of the plaque.
You can also implement extra tools to keep your teeth clean at home. For example, a water flosser is a great tool for getting rid of plaque and the bacteria that creates plaque.
If you still have red coming up on your teeth after trying these tips, you should see a dentist like Legacy Dental Arts. It's possible that you have tartar buildup, and that can't be removed at home. Once your teeth are really clean, you can go back to using the tablets to ensure that you're maintaining your improved state of oral hygiene. This will keep your teeth clean longer between visits to the dentist, so use this tip as part of your daily routine.