October 17, 2017
Perhaps the most important part of dentistry is prevention. Take good care to protect your (and your kids’) oral health, and it will pay off enormously over the course of a lifetime.
At Davenport Dental Group we provide a full menu of preventive dentistry services for your family. To book an appointment, contact whichever one of our Laredo, TX offices is most convenient to you. For Junction Drive call 956-242-6745 and for Winfield call 956-517-2695.
Good Oral Health Starts at Home
You get dental cleaning and examinations twice per year. As critical as those visits are, what happens between them is equally vital. You can’t neglect your teeth and gums at home and expect them to remain healthy. So what does good home oral hygiene entail?
You should brush your teeth at least twice per day (or, ideally, after every meal), using proper technique and fluoride toothpaste. Hold the brush at a 45-degree angle to the gums, and brush for two minutes. Be sure to reach all surfaces of the teeth, including the backs, and the gumline. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush, and gentle pressure only. Brushing too hard can wear down the enamel, which leads to pain and tooth decay.
Floss at least once per day. Break off 18 inches of floss, use a clean section for each tooth, and keep the floss taut against the enamel. This not only dislodges stuck food, but helps clean away bacteria and tartar. Rinsing with mouthwash provides one more layer of protection for your teeth and gums.
If you are a parent, one of the most important things you can do for your children is to teach them to practice good oral hygiene from a very yearly age. Even before your baby has teeth, you should be wiping down his or her gums with a damp cloth. This clears away bacteria and gets baby accustomed to a routine. And both the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend all children see the dentist for the first time by their first birthday.
We Want to See You Every Six Months
Even if you are doing everything correctly at home (which you are, right?), it’s important to come to see us twice per year for a cleaning and examination. Our skilled hygienists will remove built-up tartar and plaque that you just can’t reach with your toothbrush at home. If left behind, this will eventually lead to cavities and other problems. We will also floss and polish your teeth so that they look as clean as they are!
One of our dentists will conduct a comprehensive examination of your gums, teeth, and mouth. We will be able to spot issues before you even experience symptoms. And when it comes to tooth decay and gum disease, early detection means easier and less invasive treatment.
Periodically, we will take X-rays of your mouth. These enable us to identify hidden cavities, impacted teeth, abscesses, and other problems not visible to the dentist’s naked eye. At Davenport Dental Group, we use digital X-rays, which provide much more detailed pictures with a fraction of the radiation of traditional X-rays.
What Other Protective Measures Can I Take?
People of all ages can get dental sealants, but they are an especially good idea for children. According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control, “school-age children without sealants have almost 3 times more cavities than children with sealants.” In this simple, painless, and completely safe procedure, a thin layer of plastic is brushed onto the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. This creates a physical barrier that keeps bacteria out. Now, this isn’t an excuse to be lax with brushing and flossing, but sealants do provide proven protection against decay.
Fluoride is a mineral that strengthens teeth against acid attacks from bacteria. Every day, fluoride is lost from the teeth in a process called demineralization, so it’s essential that it be replenished regularly (remineralization). Toothpastes and most municipal water supplies are fortified with fluoride. Davenport Dental Group offers in-office fluoride varnishes that are painted onto the teeth so you can be confident you and your kids are getting enough.
Athletic mouthguards are advisable for any physical activity in which the mouth or teeth may be injured. Our custom-made mouthguards are more comfortable and effective than the one-size-fits-all variety found in stores because they are made especially for your mouth.
If it’s time to book your next checkup, or you’d like to schedule an appointment for any one of our dental services, please fill out our online form. Or you may call either one of Davenport Dental Group’s Laredo, TX offices directly: Junction Drive at 956-242-6745 or Winfield at 956-517-2695.