There are many oral hygiene tools available at many of your local store shelfs. It can be difficult to know which ones are necessary for proper teeth cleaning & maintenance, and which ones are all marketing hype. You can learn more about this when you're blogging with Dr. Suffoletta.
Choosing the dental products that are right for your oral health is easier when you look for the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. Most dentists will abide by these standards and will recommend them.
The ADA Seal means you can trust the claims made on the packaging because the manufacturers had to prove the product's worth to the ADA.
When it comes to at-home dental treatment, these are the dental tools most recommended by dentists.
Finding the Right Toothbrush
It probably goes without saying that you need a good-quality toothbrush to keep up with your oral hygiene. But what makes a toothbrush good for teeth cleaning? Dentists recommend that you stick with soft-bristled brushes because medium and hard-bristled brushes can damage your gums over time.
If you tend to scrub your teeth too abrasively, an electric toothbrush may be a good fit. The gently circular motion of the electric brush often gets better results. These can also be a great option for someone with mobility issues.
Finally, you need a brush that is a comfortable shape and size for your mouth.
Choosing a Good Toothpaste
Your toothpaste should always contain fluoride which is added to prevent decay by strengthening the enamel. If you have other oral issues like bad breath, gingivitis, or tooth sensitivity, there are pastes made specifically to combat those issues.
Consult with your dentist before opting for an abrasive whitening toothpaste as those can break down enamel.
Finding Your Favorite Floss
If you want truly healthy teeth, you have to floss at least once every day. Two times per day is recommended. Flossing is such an important part of teeth cleaning because it gets all of the trapped particles that brushing alone leaves behind.
Dental floss can be purchased in a waxed or unwaxed variety. Waxing is a better option for those with tight spaces between the teeth. You can also find floss in a wide variety of flavors and brands.
Working With Picks
If floss just isn't an option for you due to mobility issues, there are various dental picks and sticks that could be used in its place. It is important to use a gentle hand while cleaning under the gum line with a dental pick.
Water picks are another option that can work in the place of floss. These devices use a stream of water to clean in and around teeth. It is a great option for someone with braces, as it can clean around the brackets. Those with partial dentures will also benefit from a water pick.
Using a Tongue Scraper
Some people prefer to use their toothbrushes to clean their tongue, and others prefer a tongue scraper. Both ways are acceptable to dentists. Cleaning the tongue can get rid of the bacteria that cause bad breath.
Picking the Right Mouthwash
If you have ever wandered down the oral hygiene aisle in your local drug store, you already know just how many variations of mouthwash there are. The different varieties have different purposes, so you need to purchase one that aligns with your needs.
Some mouthwashes are meant to prevent gingivitis and reducing plaque. Others are formulated to address bad breath, and there are some with fluoride to help in the fight against tooth decay. Your dental professional can help you find the one that is best for you.
Using Teeth Whiteners
While not necessarily a dental tool, many people use teeth whiteners as part of their dental treatment routine. While over-the-counter products can have limited effects, the best results in whitening will come from your dental office. OTC whiteners do not have the same level of concentration as is found in whitening agents used by your dentist.
If you choose to purchase OTC whitening products like whitening strips, be sure to check for the ADA seal.
Finding the Right Dental Tools
It is important that you find dental tools for preserving the health of your teeth. Toothpaste, toothbrushes, and floss should all have the ADA seal and should align with your health needs. Consult with your dentist to find the products that will work best for you.