3 home care rules for good oral health after dental treatment

Dental treatment can enhance your oral health. Keeping your mouth in good health with excellent home care can make a big difference.

Major dental procedures call for a specialized regimen of oral health care post-treatment. If you have undergone a tooth extraction, sedation dentistry or cosmetic work, follow Dr. Frahm’s protocols so your mouth heals properly.

1. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush

Contrary to popular logic, brushing your teeth harder does not clean them better. Worse, brushing your teeth and gums too hard can cause your gums to recede. It can also wear down your tooth enamel and make your teeth more sensitive. Opt for a soft-bristled toothbrush to care for your teeth. Look for those with the American Dental Association’s Seal of Approval. When brushing with a manual toothbrush, use a gentle, circular motion at your gumline. This keeps your gums and teeth free of tartar and plaque buildup.

If you have a sonic or electric toothbrush, Dr. Frahm will let you know if it’s OK to use right after your treatment. Although the vibration and rotation of these toothbrushes do an incredible job of cleaning teeth, if your teeth and gums are extra sensitive after an in-office procedure, we may advise you to hold off for a few days.

When using a sonic or electric toothbrush, let the toothbrush do the work for you. They are designed to be held in place, so don’t exert any extra force to brush. And always hold your electric toothbrush just above the gumline for the most benefit.

2. Use non-abrasive toothpaste

Toothpastes clean your teeth with an abrasive agent to scrape away plaque and tartar. This works well when your mouth is in good health, but abrasion can be painful right after certain dental procedures.

Whitening and anti-tartar toothpastes are especially hard on teeth and in the long run, wear down tooth enamel.

After dental treatment, look for toothpastes designed for sensitive teeth. There are some well-known brands that are easy to find, including Tom’s of Maine Rapid Relief Sensitive, Colgate Enamel Health Sensitivity Relief and Sensodyne Sensitivity & Gum. A brand we highly recommend is called MI paste which is gentle, yet adds essential minerals like phosphate and calcium to help strengthen teeth and protect enamel.

3. Floss gently

For periodontal work and cosmetic procedures such as gum lifts or implants, flossing can irritate sensitive gums. It’s important to allow your gums to heal properly after any treatment. In some cases, Dr. Frahm will suggest you hold off on flossing for a while. If you’ve had a tooth extracted, it’s best to wait 24 to 48 hours before flossing. With dental implants, you may be advised to hold off for a week so as not to disturb the gum pocket.

When you do floss again, take it slow and easy to avoid irritating the surgery site. If you’re looking for a gentle floss that works well on sensitive gums, check out Cocofloss. It’s made of natural fibers, is softer than other flosses and does a great job of scrubbing away plaque. It can be more expensive than a traditional floss like Oral-B or Reach, but a floss that you like to use will reduce the need for costly dental bills later.

To schedule your next appointment with Dr. Frahm, contact us via our webform or give us a call at 831-372-8011. We are conveniently located office at 660 Camino Aguajito #201 in Monterey, CA 93940.

About Dr. Frahm

Dr. Frahm received her Doctorate of Dental Surgery from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 2003. She completes more than 100 hours of postdoctoral training each year; earning recognition from dental experts around the country for her knowledge in the areas of cosmetic, general and restorative dentistry. Dr. Frahm is committed to providing you with excellent, comprehensive dental care. Dr. Frahm uses advanced dental techniques and technology to ensure your comfort and lasting results.

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