Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Goldfish and FBI

Importance of brushing and flossing

All new dental graduates know that, as a result of our recently acquired dental education, we are going to cure the entire world of all the dental disease that exists. We learned that the most common disease known to mankind is gum disease yet, even though it has existed since the dawn of time, we are going to wave our magic wand and in one fell swoop put ourselves out of business because we have cured completely what we attack on a daily basis.

Years ago I wrote a blog before blogs existed (or even before Al Gore invented the internet) on, what else, dental subjects. Most dentists are teachers to some extent and I am no different, in fact, many of you know I don’t know how to stop talking and putting in my two cents worth on whatever subject that is being discussed. The title of my quarterly blog (or at that time it was called a “Newsletter”) was “… and Nothing But the Tooth.” Today Jennifer and I were discussing some of the things I try to instill in my patients to help them improve their dental hygiene because, believe it or not, I sometimes even dream that I have found the cure for all sorts of oral decay and I want to share what I have learned with others.

So here we go with my blogletter. If I begin to ramble let me know. Hopefully the subjects will be of some interest to you and will perhaps be a help in your daily routine. To most people any dental topic can be quite boring and could even bring a gold fish to tears. The gold fish has an attention span of less than 6 seconds, which is why it doesn’t die of boredom swimming around and around and around in a small fish bowl. What I write will be longer than 6 seconds but then again hopefully we have evolved beyond the gold fish.

FBI No I am NOT referring to them. It stands for Floss, Brush and Irrigate.

Flossing is not done to clean off the plaque that may still be on the teeth after you brush. It is done after brushing to clean off the areas in between the teeth and to loosen the plaque that is there before brushing. Then the fluoride in the toothpaste used while brushing will be absorbed into the tooth structure that has been flossed, protecting it even more from tooth decay and perhaps even reversing the decay process in some instances. Finally irrigating with a Waterpik at the end will clean the areas of the teeth which may not be cleanable with floss due to the shape of some teeth. Additionally I recommend putting 4-5 squirts of fluoride gel, such as Gingimed into the water tank when irrigating. That fluoride blown into the spaces between the teeth and below the margin of the gums is toxic to the bacteria that cause gingivitis and periodontal disease and helps significantly in your overall oral health.

So FBI in that order.

If you have any things you would like to see addressed here call my office or let us know next time you’re in.

Dr. B

Goldfish and FBI