Home Dental Care Santa Barbara

Home Care

Effective Home Care for Your Teeth and Gums

At See Me Smile Dental, we are dedicated to helping you and every member of your family have beautiful healthy smiles, which is why we encourage all of our patients to create and keep a personal home care routine for their teeth and gums.

Brushing and flossing correctly each day is preventative care that will help you maintain good oral health in between office visits.

Unfortunately, there are many things people are not aware of when it comes to brushing, flossing, and general at home dental care. Here are some tips and instructions for how to care for your teeth correctly and decrease your risk of developing serious dental diseases.

Home Care Instructions for Brushing, Flossing, and General Oral Health

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing your teeth twice every day. It is especially important to brush your teeth right before you go to bed at night or after you consume your last food or beverage. You should always brush your teeth with toothpaste and a soft bristle toothbrush approved by the ADA. Sticking to this homecare routine will help prevent cavities, bad breath, and eliminate plaque caused by food and drinks that could cause yellowing of the tooth enamel.

Here are some tips and instructions on how to properly brush your teeth:

  • Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle at your gums. Start to gently brush in small, circular motions. The ADA recommends using a soft bristle toothbrush because it will cause less trauma to your gums as you brush.
  • Brush the inner, outer, and the biting surface for each tooth.
  • Always use the tip section of the toothbrush to clean inside of your front teeth to prevent and remove plaque buildup.
  • Using a toothbrush that has a tongue scraper is beneficial. Use this rough surface that is often found on the backside of most toothbrushes to remove harmful bacteria and eliminate bad breath.
  • A toothbrush with a rubber tip is also highly recommended. You can use the tip to massage your gums, which increases blood flow and helps to reduce inflammation.
Home Care Instructions Santa Barbara CA
Electrict Toothbrushes

Electronic Toothbrushes

When possible, using an ADA approved electric toothbrush is recommended and can make brushing much easier and more effective. These brushes can make removing plaque from the teeth a simpler task with less effort. Place the bristles of the brush against your teeth and gums and allow it to do the work for you.

Remember that you don't have to apply pressure while using an electric brush and should simply guide it along your teeth and gums as the bristles take care of the brushing for you.

Do I Need to Floss?

Flossing is a task that can help protect our teeth and gums. But unfortunately so many people skip over this essential part of a healthy dental care routine. For some, flossing seems like a long and tedious process that they simply don't have time for. While others may feel that they aren't doing it correctly or they end up causing pain to their gums in the process.

No matter what your reason may be for not flossing as much as you should, it is vital to your overall dental health that you make it a habit today! By flossing each day after you brush your teeth, you can help reduce your risk of developing gingivitis which can help save you from many problems with your teeth and gums in the future.

Do I Need to Floss
What Happens When I Don't Floss

What Happens When I Don't Floss?

When you don't floss regularly, you are putting yourself at a high risk for two serious issues, cavities and gingivitis. When you don't include flossing in your routine, you don't remove all the plaque buildup and bacteria that is caught between your teeth. These bacteria irritate the sensitive tissue of your gums and cause the gums to become inflamed and red, which can lead to bleeding. The inflammation and bleeding only causes more bacteria to form, which is the main cause of gingivitis.

If you are unsure about how to floss correctly, you're not alone! When asking their dentist for guidance, many adults learn that they have been flossing incorrectly their entire lives. Here are some tips and instructions on how to floss effectively.

  • Using 12 to 18 inches of floss, wrap it around the middle fingers. Leave around 2 inches of floss in between your hands.
  • By using your thumb and forefingers, guide the floss gently in between your teeth.
  • Create a shape like the letter "C" around every tooth and underneath the gum line. Work the floss up and down gently, cleaning each side of every tooth.
  • If you have problems holding conventional floss as you should, floss holders are recommended and can be very useful with helping you complete this essential daily task.

The Best (and Worst) Foods for Healthy Teeth

Another way to keep your teeth and gums healthy at home is to make adjustments to your diet. The food that you eat affects your oral health, both positively and negatively. Here are some suggestions for which foods you should eat more of and which you should avoid to maintain a healthy smile.

Foods to Eat for a Healthy Smile

  • Foods that are rich in fiber can help promote saliva and assist with keeping your teeth and gums clean. Fiber-rich foods such as whole grains are one of your best natural defenses against cavities and various forms of gum disease.
  • Dairy products are also good at promoting saliva and the calcium found in milk and cheese will help put minerals back into your teeth that you may have lost from eating other foods. Calcium also helps rebuild your tooth enamel.
  • Foods that contain polyphenols such as green or black tea can kill or inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria. And if the water you use to make your tea contains fluoride, that's a bonus.
  • Chewing sugar-free gum is also beneficial to your teeth and gums. It is very effective at removing food particles from your mouth after you eat. Enjoying a stick of sugarless gum after meals is a simple way to keep your teeth protected if you are unable to brush right away.
Foods to Eat
Foods to Avoid

Avoid These Foods as Much as Possible

  • Candies and sweets do not have to be avoided altogether, but those that are sticky and stay around in your mouth for a long period are the worst for your dental health. Therefore you will want to avoid lollipops, caramels, taffy, and other similar candy.
  • Soft breads, potato chips, and other starches can easily get stuck between your teeth. If you don't floss as often as you need to, eating these foods frequently could lead to serious issues over time.
  • Carbonated sodas are one of the leading sources of added sugar for children and teens. Along with all the extra sugar, these drinks also contain phosphoric and citric acids that damage your tooth enamel.

Meet Dr. Omid

Dr. Omid Barkhordar, DDS has earned his reputation as a leading family and cosmetic dentist in Santa Barbara, the Central Coast, and Southern California. He is committed to providing patients of all ages with compassionate care.

From general dentistry to advanced procedures, Dr. Omid uses innovative technology and gentle techniques to deliver safe and stress-free dental care so patients can enjoy a painless, healthy, and gorgeous smile.

Dr. Omid earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) degree from the University of Southern California (USC) School of Dentistry in one of the best dental programs in the United States. His dedication to helping patients achieve their perfect smile has earned Dr. Omid the continued trust and recommendation of many clients.

No matter the age or needs of the patient, Dr. Omid is committed to helping you discover the benefits of a healthy, beautiful smile.

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Dr. Omid Barkhordar


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