How You Can Keep Your Teeth Healthy
Keep your teeth health by following these simple steps:
- Brush your teeth twice daily.
Be sure to spend at least two minutes properly brushing your teeth. To help keep track of time, sing the ABC’s or Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in your head. The best times to brush are in the morning and before bed. You can also brush your teeth throughout the day, between meals and after snacks. If you don’t have a tooth brush, simply rinsing your mouth with water can help keep your teeth healthy.
- Brush from back to front.
When brushing your teeth you should start from the back (where your molars are) and work your way to the front. Brush in circular motions and be gentle! If you brush too harshly you can cause damage to your gums (the soft tissue surrounding the neck of teeth).
- Use the right tools!
When brushing your teeth, using soft bristles is best. Whether you prefer a manual or electric toothbrush, soft bristles are much safer for your enamel.
- Learn to floss.
Flossing may take some getting used to but it is an important skill to learn. Floss helps to get rid of small pieces of food your toothbrush can’t get to.
- Make sure you eat right.
Eating fruits and vegetables is not only important for health, but also your dental hygiene.
- Don’t forget to visit your dentist!
Visiting your dentist once every six months is part of keeping a great smile. Dr.Garrastazu, along with the other doctors in our office, will help make sure you have a winning smile. A visit to the dentist helps guarantee you that your teeth are healthy and strong.
Checking for Cavities
Lights! Camera! ACTION!
Just like the stars on the red carpet, we’ll need you to smile for a few pictures while at the dentist.
During your visit, the dental hygienist may take X-rays, or pictures, of your teeth. These pictures can show cavities hiding between your teeth and problems beneath your gums.
It does not hurt to get an X-ray and it takes only a few seconds. The dental assistant will place a thick blanket over your chest (to protect your body from the high-energy waves) and put a piece of plastic (that holds the X-ray film) into your mouth. As you gently bite down on the plastic, you’ll have to be very still for a few seconds while the dental assistant snaps the picture.
Take a look! This is what the Doctor sees when taking a look at your teeth X-rays.
What is a Cavity?
Without even knowing its meaning, this six letter word already has a bad ring to it. Cavities are holes in your teeth; they form as a result of your enamel breaking down. Enamel is that strong outer covering on your teeth, kind of like bones in your body. Though enamel is very tough, when we don’t brush our teeth or when we eat too much sugar, we can break this tough substance down.
Plaque is a form of bacteria. This sticky nemesis clings to your teeth, helping the sugars on your teeth turn into acids that slowly begin to eat away enamel. Within no time, these cavities continue to grow bigger and deeper. Cavities can grow deep enough to reach your nerves, and become very painful. Visiting your dentist every six months and having x-rays taken of your teeth will help the dentist find cavities on time and keep them from getting too big or too deep.
What Happens If I Have a Cavity?
No matter the size, it is important to treat the cavity. Cavities that go untreated can continue to grow bigger and bigger and eventually can even get to your nerve. If the doctor finds a cavity, he’ll ask you to come back for another visit.
Once again you’ll be asked to take a seat in the big comfy recliner. The dentist will use special tools to remove the decayed (or dead) part of your tooth. Then, using special material, he will once again fill the tooth. The filling used will help to keep your tooth strong and healthy. In no time you will have your smile back.
Why do we need Fluoride?
Fluoride is a natural mineral, like aluminum or gold. Fluoride makes your teeth strong and helps prevent cavities. At The Little Tooth Doctor, we use a fluoride varnish. After the fluoride is applied, feel free to eat and drink within ten minutes! Only make sure to wait at least 6 hours before brushing.
How does fluoride work?
Fluoride is a natural element, you can find fluoride in the water you drink or in the air you breathe! Many years ago, scientists discovered that kids who had more fluoride in their drinking water had fewer cavities. This discovery promoted the application of fluoride as a routine service added in addition to cleanings.
Fluoride mixes with tooth enamel in teeth to help strengthen them. When fluoride mixes in with the growing bones and developing teeth of children, it helps to provide strength to the teeth enamel, helping to prevent cavities and nourish a healthy smile.
Why are teeth important?
Whether you’re eating an apple, singing your favorite song, or smiling for your class pictures, teeth are important. Teeth help in breaking down foods so that your body can properly receive the nutrients from them. Teeth also help you speak clearly and give you that winning smile.
Taking Care of your teeth:
Properly brushing your teeth and visiting your dentist helps in preventing plaque from sticking to your teeth.
Plaque is a clear film of bacteria that sticks to teeth. This same plaque is what causes cavities and can even lead to other problems such as gingivitis. Food and juices can leave sugars on your teeth; bacteria feed off the sugars and turn them into acids that eat away tooth enamel. This causes holes, better known as cavities.
Proper care of your teeth helps keep bacteria off your teeth, helping to give you a healthy and happy smile.