While dental care basics are often drummed into us from a young age, a couple of extra steps here and there can ensure that the health of your mouth, teeth and gums is well looked after.
With this in mind, we asked our team of dental professionals some of the most frequently asked oral health questions.
How often should i go to the dentist?
This changes from patient to patient and the ideal time between visits should be assessed by your dentist. Generally speaking, the average is for you to have your teeth cleaned every six months and new X-rays every two years.
At what age should children first visit the dentist?
It is appropriate to start visiting the dentist as soon as your baby’s first tooth erupts. Initial visits in the early years are more to get children used to the sights, sounds and smells of the dentist and make it a fun experience, to beat of the stigma or fear about going. Five years old is probably the latest age we would recommend scheduling your child’s first visit as this is the point where adult teeth will soon be erupting and long-lasting damage can start to occur.
Why is it important too make regular visits to the dentist?
Your dentist will check your teeth and mouth for decay and gum disease at your regular check-ups. Dental decay can occur painlessly, especially at its early stages when it can still be either reversed without filling. Your dentist can also give you advice on how to prevent decay.
What should i look for in a toothbrush/toothpaste?
The main reason we brush our teeth is for removing plaque. We recommend soft or extra-soft brushes as they are firm enough to remove plaque from teeth and gums, but not too firm to be abrasive to your enamel or gums. Consider an electric toothbrush which simplifies brushing technique.
We recommend regular adult toothpaste with fluoride for all adults and for children who can spit the toothpaste out without swallowing. Younger children should use child-specific toothpaste, which contains less fluoride until they learn to spit competently.
Dr Nessa Finlay – What are the top 3 tips for good oral health?
– Reducing frequency of intake of foods/drinks that have a high sugar content.
– Avoid snacking between meals.
– Brushing twice daily with an electric tooth brush.
– Brushing for at lease two minutes.
– Flossing or using brushes once a day.
3. REGULAR EXAMINATIONS
– Patients should inspect their own mouths regularly for any obvious abnormalities of the teeth or soft tissues.
– Patients should see a dentist every six months, for detection of any remaining abnormalities.