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Each and every family member needs to maintain good oral hygiene. Not only does it keep your teeth healthy, but it also prevents bad breath, tooth decay, and other dental problems. While mostly preventable, numerous types of oral diseases have a significant medical expense for many nations and impact people of all ages. Pain, discomfort, disfigurement, and even death are all possible outcomes of these conditions.

Oral diseases afflict almost 3.5 billion people worldwide, according to studies. Some common causes of oral disease include the following:

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Tobacco use
  • Alcohol consumption
  • A diet high in sugar
  • Dry mouth

These factors put people at a higher risk for gum disease, tooth decay, and other dental problems. While good oral hygiene cannot completely eliminate the risks, it can certainly reduce them. And this must start at home, with parents leading by example and teaching their children the importance of oral care.

So, how can you ensure that everyone in your family maintains good oral hygiene? Here are 5 ways:

Brush teeth twice a day for two minutes

The first and most important step to good oral hygiene is brushing your teeth correctly and regularly. Everyone in your family should be brushing their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each time. This will aid in the removal of plaque and germs from the dental surface.

Plaque is the sticky substance that forms on teeth due to the bacteria in our mouth. If not removed, plaque can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Make sure to use fluoride toothpaste as it helps protect against cavities. And be sure to replace your toothbrush every three months or sooner if the bristles start to fray.

Teach your children to brush their teeth correctly using the American Dental Association guide. The proper brushing technique involves using a back-and-forth motion as well as a circular motion. Be sure to brush on the inside surfaces of your teeth as well as the outside. And don’t forget to brush your tongue. This will help remove bacteria and bad breath.

Floss once a day

Flossing is just as important as brushing, yet many people do not do it regularly. Flossing helps remove plaque and bacteria between the teeth and the gum line—places that a toothbrush cannot reach. Everyone in your family should be flossing at least once a day.

The best way to floss is to use a “C” shape with the flossing material. Slide it between your teeth and use a gentle back and forth motion. Be sure to go below the gum line, as this is where most of the plaque and bacteria accumulate. Don’t forget to floss your tongue, too — this will help remove bacteria and bad breath.

Use about 18 inches of floss and wind it around your middle fingers. Keep the floss tightly sandwiched between your thumb and index finger, then use your index fingers to slide it between your teeth.

Visit the dentist every six months

Many people do not visit the dentist regularly because they think they do not need to. Others may find the cost of dental care prohibitive. And still, others may be afraid of the dentist. But whatever the reason, not getting regular dental check-ups can lead to serious oral health problems.

A dental patient examining her teeth in the mirror with her dentist and associate on both sides.

Untreated cavities can lead to tooth decay, eventually leading to tooth loss. Gum disease is another serious oral health problem that can lead to bone loss, receding gums, and tooth loss. That’s why everyone in your family needs to visit a professional dentist every six months for a professional cleaning and examination.

The dentist will remove plaque and tartar from your teeth during the cleaning. Tartar is hardened plaque that can only be removed by a professional dentist. The examination is just as important as the cleaning. If any problems are found, the dentist will recommend treatment.

Set a good example

Parents often command their children to brush their teeth and floss but do not follow through with their oral care. This can send the wrong message to children, who may think oral care is unimportant.

That’s why parents need to set a good example by brushing their teeth twice daily, flossing once a day, and visiting the dentist every six months. Parents need to lead by example when it comes to oral hygiene. Children learn best by observing and imitating what they see.

You should also avoid sugary drinks and snacks as they can lead to cavities. And be sure to set aside time each day for your children to brush their teeth and floss. You can even make it a fun family activity by singing or playing games while everyone brushes their teeth.

Maintain good oral health

When it comes to oral health, we often think about the hygiene and cleanliness of our teeth. But many people don’t realize that good oral health can also improve our quality of life. Everyone in your family needs to follow a good oral lifestyle to have good oral health. Following these simple tips will help ensure that everyone in your family has a healthy and beautiful smile.

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