Oral & Vision Health Blog

National Dental Hygiene Month: Four Important Oral Care Steps

October is National Dental Hygiene Month, and its purpose is to remind everyone to take of their oral health.

It's sponsored by the American Dental Hygienists' Association and the William Wrigley Jr. Company. This year they are promoting the "Do the Daily 4" message, which includes: 

Brush Your Teeth

It's important to brush your teeth two times a day for two minutes each time. Research has proven that this is the best way to prevent cavities, reduce plaque and avoid oral diseases such as gingivitis. If you're using a manual toothbrush, the proper way to brush is to place the bristles along the gum line at a 45 degree angle. Gently brush two to three teeth at a time using a back and forth rolling motion to clean both your lower and upper teeth.


Some statistics say that nearly 80 percent of people don't floss. However, flossing once a day is a very important step when it comes to keeping your mouth healthy. It removes food particles and plaque from places a toothbrush cannot reach such as in between the teeth. Not flossing can allow plaque to buildup which can cause tooth decay and tartar formation. The bacteria can also cause serious health issues such as diabetes, heart disease, and a stroke. If you don't like to use traditional floss, you can use a water flosser that flosses your teeth using water and a small amount of pressure.

It doesn't matter if you brush or floss first. However, by flossing first, it can allow more fluoride from your toothpaste to get between your teeth. Fluoride keeps tooth enamel strong so that it doesn't decay. 

Rinse with Mouthwash

Rinsing daily with an anti-microbial mouthwash helps prevent bad breath and gum disease. It's recommended that you buy a mouthwash brand that has the ADA Seal of Acceptance on the label.

Chew Sugar-Free Gum after Meals

Chewing sugar-free gum after meals stimulates saliva. This helps fight cavities and keeps food particles from sticking to the teeth.

By following these easy steps, you'll have brighter teeth and better oral health.

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