Your preventive care visits every six months with your dentist are important, but did you know that your at-home oral hygiene is the most important step to avoiding tooth decay? More specifically, your nighttime oral care goes a long way to preventing cavities and plaque and tartar buildup. So while your dental visits at Nixa, MO dentist office MAC Dental are key parts of your oral healthcare, you also need to make sure you’re keeping your teeth healthy at home before you go to bed. Here are 4 tips to making the most out of your nighttime oral health routine.
1. Brush and floss every day, the right way
A casual brush won’t cut it when it comes to preventing tooth decay. After a long day of eating and drinking, you’ll want to make sure you brush your teeth for the full two minutes and follow it up with a thorough floss to remove plaque from between the teeth. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and an ADA-approved toothpaste to get your teeth shiny and clean before bed. Having a clean mouth before bed makes you feel fresh and clean, making it easier to fall asleep.
2. Floss before bed
Oral bacteria love to feed off of food particles left behind on your teeth. They also love the warm, moist environment in your mouth while you are asleep, and will continue to multiply overnight. While the MAC Dental team would love it if you flossed more than once a day, if you are only going to do it once, do it before bed to slow down plaque buildup while you sleep.
3. Use an electric toothbrush
Using a tool that you look forward to can improve the likelihood of brushing your teeth before bed. An electric toothbrush provides powerful brushing movements that can help you remove plaque more efficiently than a manual toothbrush. However, a regular toothbrush will do just fine! Use something that will make it easier for you to add your oral care to your nighttime routine.
4. Get a mouth guard to help stop teeth grinding or snoring
Do you wake up with a sore jaw or grind your teeth during the day? Many people who grind their teeth during the day also do it at night, which can lead to worn teeth, cracks, TMJ disorders, and tooth discomfort. See Dr. McLauchlin if you think you grind your teeth and we’ll help you decide if a nighttime snore guard or mouth guard is appropriate for you.
Nixa, MO Dental Care
Taking care of your teeth at night will help keep your smile healthy and beautiful for years to come. In addition to regular visits with Dr. McLauchlin, make sure your at-home oral hygiene routine includes both morning and nighttime teeth care. Contact our Nixa dentist office by phone at 417.202.0932 to schedule your appointment.