In recognition of National Dental Hygiene Month, we visited with FoundCare Dentist Dr. Dorotie Lacroze for some tips on how to maintain good oral health.

Good oral health can prevent bad breath, gum disease, and tooth decay. But, at what age should we start promoting good oral health? Dr. Lacroze recommends starting mouth care even before your child's teeth have developed. Parents can use a small amount of toothpaste on a damp cloth to gently clean their infant's gums. To avoid plaque build-up and cavities, parents are encouraged to start brushing as soon as their child's teeth surface.

Dr. Lacroze also suggests children start flossing around the age of 7 or once their motor skills have fully developed. For those who still need additional help with flossing, Dr. Lacroze suggests utilizing a dental pick instead of dental floss as they are much easier to navigate around the mouth.

Teenagers should also be encouraged to maintain good oral health. Dr. Lacroze advises parents to encourage their teens to drink water after consuming sugary products to help combat the effects of sugar on the mouth.

What about those who have artificial teeth? Dr. Lacroze always recommends removing dentures before going to sleep as dentures can be a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi. For those who suffer from dry mouth, Dr. Lacroze suggests over-the-counter saliva substitutes containing xylitol, an FDA approved sugar substitute.  Saliva substitutes containing xylitol can provide lubricating comfort while reducing tooth decay.

Anyone can practice good oral health. Dr. Lacroze recommends brushing and flossing twice a day, incorporating a fluoride mouthwash, and visiting your dentist for routine cleanings every six months. For better plaque removal, Dr. Lacroze favors electric toothbrushes and water flossers for those who don't enjoy flossing.

Call us today for your adult and pediatric dental needs: 561-432-5849.