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Nov 3, 2011

Healthy Living’s oral health errors

When it comes to our oral health, we usually feel like we’ve got things figured out: Brushing a few times a day, flossing on an occasional basis and a dentist visit every so often. However, it is possible that you may be making a few missteps when it comes to your oral hygiene. Tonight’s Healthy Living looks a few of these common oral health errors.

Marleni Cuellar, Reporting:

Good management of your oral health will spare you a lot of orthodontic pain and expense but there are some common errors or overlooked habits that may still be threatening to your teeth & gums. Dentist, Dr David Gonzalez, shares with us some of the common oral health mistakes he sees with his patients.

Dr David Gonzalez, Dentist

David Gonzalez

“One of the most common things that I have seen in my clinic is people coming with sensitive teeth. When I do an inspection of their teeth I notice that they have a lot of abrasion process going in the cervical area, the cervical area is area meaning the lining of the gum, that part of their teeth will have worn out areas of the enamel and exposing the dentine which is a very sensitive tissue.”

The unsuspecting culprit in this case is also the weapon of choice against plaque: your toothbrush more specifically a hard toothbrush.

Dr David Gonzalez

“One of the problems is that the pat8ients think that by using a hard toothbrush that they’re feeling like a scrubbing on their teeth and it’s not necessary. Once you manage to remove the plaque properly it’s enough actually hard toothbrushes won’t remove the plaque properly because the bristles that are too hard won’t get in between the spaces of the teeth.”

For this reason, Dr Gonzales advises that soft or medium bristle toothbrushes be used instead. As a dentist, he acknowledges that not everyone remembers to brush their teeth after every meal. His advice is to, at the very least, rinse your mouth with water but never neglect your teeth at night. Brushing before bed is most important.

Dr David Gonzalez

“At nights we tend to breathe through our mouths and that would cause our mouths to be dry and saliva have a buffer function within which it allows the PH in our mouths to become more neutral. If at nights we breathe through our mouths then it will be dry and the caries activities much higher. If you have bacteria in an environment to develop or colonize faster than the bacteria will be feeding on the carbohydrates that you ate during the day and will produce a lot of acids that are going to damage the enamel of your teeth.”

When it comes to oral health for children, Dr Gonzalez advises to start early and never neglect primary teeth because they’re temporary.

Dr David Gonzalez

“It is important for you to start at least cleaning the gums with  a cloth or wet gauze on their teeth  on their gums before the first tooth comes in. so when the 1st tooth comes in it’s easier for you to use the toothbrush that is designed for kids to do the brushing.  Toothpaste for children doesn’t necessarily have to contain fluoride. It is important to remove the little plaque in their mouths and you can start with doing it with a piece of wet cloth or a piece of cotton.  The primary teeth are the guide for the permanent one. If you have lost the permanent won’t come out in the right direction or position and there’s more chances of the patient having to see an orthodontist when the problem could have been solved from the beginning.”

If you’ve found yourself a perpetrator of any of these habits, a quick change in routine will go a long way.

Dr David Gonzalez

“Your oral health starts at home, do visit your dentist to seek advice.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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