Between your regular dental cleanings and exams at Edgewood Dental Care it’s important to keep up on good dental care at home. For most people this means brushing twice a day and flossing but there are other simple things you can do to detect potential problems and identify issues before they become serious. With good home oral care you’ll be alerted right away if you need to schedule an appointment at our Edgewood dentist office!
There are several different things you can do in addition to regular home oral care to get a boost to your health and detect problems. We want to share three of the best with you here today!
Monthly Oral Cancer Exams
While not everyone is at the same risk for oral cancer, older patients and tobacco users should definitely be inspecting their mouths once a month for changes that could indicate oral cancer. We can further inspect and confirm any signs of oral cancer but it’s a good idea to catch it as soon as possible!
You don’t need anything aside from a dental mirror and clean hands to perform a self oral cancer exam and it is primarily checking for changes in texture, look, and feel of your mouth and gums. As a note, any sores, swelling, or discoloration you may have had from a cold should recede within several weeks.
- Check your face for swelling or changes in shape. Also feel the underside of your jaw and check for hard lumps or changes in texture.
- Pull your lips out, check for white spots or discoloration and lumps.
- Check your cheeks in the same way as your lips – pull them out from your face and use the dental mirror to check for white spots, hard lumps, ulcers, and discoloration.
- Check your gums, both front and back, for spots, ulcers, lumps, or discoloration. Be sure to run your hands along them as well.
- Check the surface of your tongue for white spots, and check the sides and underneath for ulcers, white spots, or difference in color and texture.
- Check the roof of your mouth for the same problems, and be sure to use your hand to feel for lumps or texture changes.
If you find anything abnormal make note of it and check on it weekly. If the problem is still present after three weeks then call Edgewood Dental Care right away.
Check Your Brushing Effectiveness
Have you ever wondered how effective your brushing and flossing is? There’s an easy way to find out: disclosing tablets. You can find them at most every pharmacy and they are a simple chewable tab or solution that dyes all the bacteria in your mouth! It’s worth the few dollars to know you’re doing a good job!
- Brush and floss your teeth like normal. Be sure to not go out of your way to brush more thoroughly than you usually do – this is a test to determine if you’re doing it right every day!
- Rinse your mouth and then chew up/swish the discloser, following any instructions on the package.
- Spit out the disclosing material and gently rinse your mouth. You should now be able to see any remaining bacteria dyed on your teeth and gums!
These tablets are a great way to find out what parts of your mouth are getting less attention so that you can boost your home care. Next time you come in we’ll we’ll amazed at how clean your smile is!
Get An Electric Toothbrush
A lot of people don’t like them, but electric brushes are effective! We recommend using a brush that has the American Dental Association’s seal of approval, which means that dentists have personally attested to its ability to clean teeth!
Electric brushes shouldn’t just vibrate – they should oscillate (side-to-side movement) and have a rotating component. Those kinds of brushes have been proven superior to other kinds, and are especially great for older adults with arthritis or other conditions that make brushing hard!
We’re Always Here To Help!
If you want to get more great tips to maximize your at-home dental care or simply want questions about your oral health answered don’t hesitate to call Edgewood Dental Care today! We’re here to get you the answers to all the questions you have right when you have them!
You can contact our Edgewood dentist office at 859-474-7830 or your can request an appointment using our online form. We look forward to helping you!