Australian Dental Association Dental Health Week: Watch Your Mouth
This year’s Australian Dental Association (ADA) Dental Health Week focuses on the need to “Watch Your Mouth”.
Dental Health Week (6 to 12 August) is the Australian Dental Association’s major annual oral health promotion event.
The aim of the week is to educate Australians about the importance of maintaining good oral health by spreading four key messages to all Australians:
- Brush teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste
- Clean in-between teeth once a day (with floss or interdental brushes)
- Eat a healthy balanced diet and limit sugar intake
- Regularly visit the dentist for check-ups and preventive treatment
At DentArana we support this effort, because these simple approaches can help Australians, avoid complex treatment, save time at the dentist, save on dental treatment fees, and save time and energy expended looking after their teeth. If you have any doubt about the importance of these messages, consider these statistics:
- Just under 50% of Australians only brush once-a-day
- Nearly 40% never floss or clean-in-between their teeth
- Over 73% of young people (14-18 years) consume too much sugar
- 65% of Australians haven’t seen a dentist in the last two years
Let’s take a closer look at the ADA messages.
Brush teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste
The ADA wants all Australians to understand what constitutes a great toothbrushing – what brush, what technique, and what toothpaste. Here are the ADA suggestions:
- Brush your teeth for at least 2 minutes, twice a day.
- Use a toothbrush with small bristles, a small head, and a flexible neck.
- Clean your teeth systematically, holding the toothbrush at the gumline at a 45- degree angle.
- Brush all the surfaces of your teeth paying special attention to where the tooth meets the gum. This is where plaque builds up.
- Don’t press too hard as high pressure can harm gums and tooth enamel.
Brushing with a powered toothbrush. If you have limited dexterity, an electric toothbrush may be a better option.
The importance of the right toothpaste. You should choose toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride strengthens teeth, making them more resistant to attacks from sugar and acid, thus preventing decay. Fluoride can also help remineralise early decay.
Be careful with children. Don’t use toothpaste when cleaning the teeth of children under 18 months of age. Use a pea-sized dollop of low fluoride toothpaste for children aged 18 months to six years. Supervise children brushing their teeth until the age of eight to ensure they don’t swallow the toothpaste.
NOTE: It takes two to three minutes to brush your teeth properly but most people spend 30 seconds or less!
Clean in-between teeth once a day
Flossing is a key part of your oral hygiene regimen:
- Floss at least once a day
- Ask your dentist to demonstrate the correct flossing technique
- Ask your dentist if interdental aids will complement your flossing
- Your children should floss as soon as they have two teeth that touch
Just as in brushing, technique is important to flossing:
- Wind approximately 45 cm of floss around your middle fingers and grip it tightly between your thumbs and index fingers.
- Keeping the thumb and index close together, gently (to avoid trauma) guide the floss between the teeth. Use a side-to-side motion to ensure the sides of both teeth are cleaned equally.
- To clean the base of the tooth, curl the floss around it and insert gently under the gum.
If you have problems with conventional flossing, talk to your dentist about oral irrigators, floss threaders, and other oral tools that can help.
Eat a healthy balanced diet and limit sugar intake
The basic message here is to eat healthy and consume fewer sugary drinks and food:
- Limit your sugar intake.
- Fluoridated tap water is best.
- Read the ingredients panel on food products as many have hidden sugars.
- Choose teeth friendly foods such as cheese, nuts and vegetables.
- Avoid snacking and grazing.
Regularly visit the dentist for check-ups and preventive treatment
Visit your DentArana dentist as scheduled, usually twice a year. Dentists discover problems that might escape your notice.
To help our community during Dental Health Week, DentArana offers the following promotions:
- New Patients Special – Pay No Gap: NO GAP for Exam, Clean and Scale (with any health insurance) for under 17
- New Patients Special – No Health Insurance: Only $99 for Exam, Clean and Scale (under 17’s)
- FREE Consultation for Dental Implants, Cosmetic Dentistry, Smile Make over, Orthodontics, and Anti-wrinkle Injections.
(Terms and Conditions apply)
DentArana Is Your Partner In Health
DentArana provides Family Dentistry in Arana Hills. Our goal is to make quality dental care affordable, and help you achieve maximum oral and overall health! DentArana can help you with all your dental needs, from clean and scales to bridges and dentures. We offer late and Saturday hours!
Call (07) 3351 3366 or visit us at Shop 5 Patricks Place, Corner Dawson Parade and Patricks Road in Arana Hills.