The dental health aisle in your local pharmacy is lined with all varieties of oral hygiene tools and products. How can you know which ones are best for you and your family? Is an electric or traditional toothbrush better? What kind of floss should you use? Do your kids need a different type?
If you have questions about oral health products, you’re in the right place! Here, you’ll acquire excellent, expert information to help set your mind at ease and set your morning oral hygiene routine up for success.
Now, let’s explore the most important oral health tools and products. We’ll cover:
- Floss or Flossers
- Tongue Scrapers
- Home Whitening Products
Best Toothbrushes for Oral Health
The big question here is, electric or traditional? Studies show that electric toothbrushes aren’t more effective than non-electric counterparts. However, most people tend to brush longer with an electric toothbrush. So, if you or your children have trouble brushing for a full two minutes in the morning and evening, an electric toothbrush may help maintain good oral hygiene.
- Unless Dr. Bridges tells you otherwise, always select a soft-bristled brush.
- Choose a brush with a head that fits your mouth. Kids need small brushes.
- Select different colors for each household member.
- If you get sick, once you’re well microwave your toothbrush in a cup of water for 3 minutes to kill germs.
- Replace toothbrushes every 3 months.
Toothpaste: The Right Fit Makes All the Difference
You need to consider your toothpaste’s main benefit (reduces sensitivity, whitens teeth, etc.) as well as the flavor you and your family members prefer. Children often opt for fruity flavors, while older kids and adults usually prefer a mint toothpaste.
- Children under three years of age need toothpaste without fluoride. (Swallowing toothpaste in childhood can cause fluorosis, permanent horizontal white lines, on permanent teeth that have not yet erupted.)
- Choose an ADA-approved toothpaste. (The ADA is the American Dental Association.)
Flosses or Flossers Are Super Important
In truth, few people floss, and even fewer floss correctly. Flossing can feel awkward if you don’t use a good technique. Our hygienists will be happy to teach you proper flossing techniques so that you can develop an effective method.
You’ll find waxed and unwaxed, as well as flat and round varieties of floss. All work well if you use the proper technique, so just select the flavor and type that appeal to you.
Flossers are ergonomic, pre-threaded tools that you throw away after use. They can make flossing much easier for children and seniors in particular.
- Choose a flavored floss to freshen your breath.
- Choose the floss that your hygienist recommends or the one you’re most likely to use every day to maintain good oral hygiene.
- Floss once a day, as recommended by the ADA. If you wear braces, use interdental flossers as well as traditional floss, and floss after meals and snacks when you brush your teeth.
- Floss before brushing.
Mouthwashes: Different Types for Different Issues
Like toothpaste, mouthwash comes in many flavors and serves varying purposes. Choose the mouthwash that will accomplish your goal, whether you want to brighten your teeth with whitening mouthwash or use a simple fluoride rinse.
- Kids under three should not use mouthwash.
- ACT mouthwash helps kids measure the right amount with its special press-to-measure bottle.
- Everyone in your family may prefer a different mouthwash.
Tongue Scrapers: A Great Tool for Fresher Breath
Few people use a tongue scraper. The tool, which comes in various shapes and sizes, literally scrapes the top of the tongue to remove plaque and debris from between the bumps of the tongue. Use a tongue scraper after you brush to reduce plaque and bad breath. Then rinse with your preferred mouthwash.
Home Whitening Products: An Afforable Option for Moderate Results
Dr. Bridges offers professional teeth whitening systems in our office. If you only want mild to moderate results, however, you can opt for an over-the-counter whitening product. Without a prescription, you can purchase whitening strips, pastes, mouthwashes, trays, and brush-on varieties.
Call for Your Oral Hygiene Consultation
In Duncan, OK, Dr. Matthew Bridges treats patients of all ages. (Our team loves kids!) If you need more direction on maximizing the effectiveness of your oral health regimen at home, schedule a new patient consultation today. Call 580.255.4880 today.