Why is Oral Hygiene Important?
Periodontal disease (gum disease) is more common than you might think. Adults over 35 lose more teeth to periodontal disease rather than to cavities. Three out of four adults are affected at some time in their life. Because it is not usually detected until it has reached advanced stages, many people may have this disease without even knowing it.
Periodontal disease is serious – It is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults and new research is exploring possible links between gum disease and diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other serious ailments.
Periodontal disease and decay are both caused by bacterial plaque. Plaque is a colorless film that sticks to your teeth at the gum line. Plaque constantly forms on your teeth. It eventually hardens into tartar.
When the tartar is not removed, it can lead to an infection that may eventually break down the gum tissue and spread to the underlying bone. In extreme cases, teeth can loosen and fall out.
The good news is that periodontal disease is preventable and treatable! If caught early, it can be reversed. Good oral hygiene can help prevent gum disease, but regular dental check-ups are essential to early detection, especially in those with a family history of the disease. Brushing and flossing are very effective ways to remove plaque from your tooth surfaces. However, it is important to develop proper techniques.
Our hygienists will be glad to review flossing with you during your regular office visits. Good nutrition plays a large role in your dental health. Brushing and flossing help keep your teeth and gums healthy and strong. However, a balanced diet will help boost your body’s immune system, leaving you less vulnerable to oral disease.
The Canadian Dental Association recommends the first dental visit should be just after your child’s first birthday. Although this may seem young, it gives the child the opportunity to feel comfortable with the sights, smells and sounds of our dental office. It will also allow time for parents to be educated about the role they play in their child’s oral health.
5 Tips to Help Your Child Build Healthy Oral Habits
Before your baby has teeth, wipe their gums gently with a clean wet cloth after each feeding.
If your baby sleeps with a bottle or sippy cup at naptime or bedtime, fill it with water only.
As soon as the first tooth appears, start brushing your baby’s teeth with fluoride toothpaste in the morning and before bedtime. Fluoride is a mineral that protects teeth.
Let your child watch you brushing your teeth and assist your child's tooth brushing.
To prevent spreading germs that cause tooth decay, do not put anything in your child's mouth if it has been in your mouth. Don't share spoons, cups, toothbrushes, etc.
The most important thing to know is that there are average timelines and average patterns for tooth eruption. But every timeline, if not average, is normal. At around 2 1/2 years old, we can expect your child will have all their baby teeth. Between the ages of five and six, the first permanent teeth will begin to erupt. Some of the permanent teeth replace baby teeth as they fall out while some erupt further back in the mouth, behind all the baby teeth. Baby teeth are important as they not only hold space for the permanent teeth, but they are important for chewing, biting, speech, and appearance. For this reason it is important to maintain a healthy diet and daily hygiene routine.