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It is extremely important to take care of your smile in between dental visits. This will reduce cavities, give you a brighter smile, and reduce your risks for dental emergencies. Here are the basics of at-home smile care.


Brush: First, brush your teeth. This should be done twice a day for two minutes each time. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush, as stiff bristles can do damage to your gums and tooth enamel. It is best to choose a toothbrush that has earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months.


Floss:  The daily accompaniment to brushing, flossing should take 2-3 minutes each day. It doesn’t matter if you floss before or after you brush, as long as it gets done. Use a single-filament floss that has been approved by the American Dental Association.


Mouthwash: There are two kinds of mouthwash, therapeutic and cosmetic. Therapeutic mouthwash actively assists mouth health, while cosmetic mouthwash only freshens breath temporarily. The addition of therapeutic mouthwash may be beneficial to the oral health routines of some people. Use according to package directions. If you need to avoid alcohol, be sure to read labels carefully, as many types of mouthwashes contain alcohol. Never give mouthwash to children under 6 years old.


Chew Gum: After eating, your mouth is more sensitive to abrasions. Because of this, it is best to avoid brushing teeth right after eating. But, it is also best to clear food particles, sugars, and acids as soon as possible. The best way to satisfy both is to chew sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after eating. This stimulates saliva flow which cleans the mouth, without being abrasive to teeth.


For more information, call Randal Brown at 717-687-9366. If you are in the Strasburg, Pennsylvania area and it’s time for your biannual appointment, set it with Dr. Randal Brown and our team! We look forward to seeing you.