Poor oral hygiene can lead to bad breath, tooth decay, gum disease, and premature loss of teeth.
If you are not brushing effectively, plaque, the sticky film that forms on your teeth will build-up along your gumline. This creates an environment for bacteria to accumulate around the teeth.
If left undisturbed this plaque layer will increase in thickness and your gums will become inflamed, red, and bleed easily. You now have gingivitis. Left unchecked, gingivitis can lead to more serious conditions such as Periodontitis. Gingivitis is reversible.
Brushing effectively twice a day and flossing everyday will quickly restore you gums back to health. In just a few days you will notice the bleeding and inflammation will start reducing.
That same sticky plaque layer that causes gingivitis can also lead to cavities in your teeth. If left undisturbed the bacteria in the plaque feed on the sugars and rigid carbohydrates in your diet and as a result an acid is formed. This acid is held next to the tooth in that sticky layer and starts to leech the mineral out of the enamel.
The first signs of decay are often “white marks” on the teeth, known as “white spot lesions”. We often see these marks along gumlines where plaque accumulates, and often around the brackets in orthodontic patients. If left unchecked these lesions will progress, the enamel will become so weak it will break and a cavity will form.
Again, effective and thorough brushing, flossing, and use of interdental brushes when recommended will dramatically reduce the risk of marks or cavities on your teeth.
The use of fluoride toothpastes and fluoride mouthwashes restore the mineral back to the enamel and greatly reduce the incidence of white spot lesions and decay. We often recommend Tooth Mousse for use at the end of orthodontic treatment to help prevent tooth decay and combat white spot lesions.