Oral Health Tips for Busy Families

Maintaining good oral health is essential for overall well-being. However, in the hustle and bustle of modern life, busy families often find it challenging to prioritize oral hygiene. With work, school, extracurricular activities, and countless other responsibilities, dental care can sometimes take a backseat. But fear not, for there are simple and effective ways to ensure your family’s smiles remain healthy and bright.

family doing toothbrush together and maintaining their oral health

In this blog, we’ll share practical oral health tips for busy families.

Stick to a Routine

The key to successful oral health maintenance is consistency. Establishing a daily routine can help ensure that everyone in your family remembers to brush and floss regularly. Make it a family affair by setting a specific time each morning and evening to practice good oral hygiene. This routine will not only promote healthy teeth but also teach your children the importance of maintaining their oral hygiene.

Choose the Right Tools

Selecting the right toothbrush and toothpaste for your family is crucial. For young children, opt for soft-bristle toothbrushes with small heads, specially designed for their little mouths. Use fluoride toothpaste, as it helps strengthen tooth enamel and prevents cavities. Adults and older children can use electric toothbrushes, which are highly effective at removing plaque.

Teach Proper Technique

how to brush? technique to brush your teeth

Proper brushing and flossing techniques are essential for effective oral hygiene. Teach your children how to brush for at least two minutes, covering all surfaces of their teeth. Please encourage them to brush their tongues gently to remove bacteria that can cause bad breath. For flossing, demonstrate the correct method and supervise your kids until they can do it on their own, as poor flossing habits leading to inadequate plaque removal can result in gum disease and cavities.

Teaching children foundational, effective oral hygiene habits early can lead to a lifelong, healthy smile.

Stock Healthy Snacks

Busy families often rely on convenient snacks, which can lead to poor oral health if sugary or acidic. Try to stock up on healthier options like fruits, vegetables, yogurt, and cheese. These foods not only nourish the body but also help maintain a balanced oral environment. If sugary drinks or snacks are a must, try to limit them and encourage water intake afterward to rinse away sugar residue.

Stay Hydrated

Drinking water is essential for good oral health. Water helps wash away food particles, bacteria, and acids that can lead to tooth decay. Encourage your family to drink water throughout the day, and make it a habit to rinse your mouth after meals when brushing isn’t possible.

Regular Dental Checkups

dental checkup

Despite busy schedules, prioritize regular dental checkups for the entire family. Dental visits should occur at least twice a year to catch and address any potential issues early and ensure they’re receiving adequate dental care day to day. Consider scheduling appointments well in advance to ensure you don’t forget in the midst of your busy lives.

Set a Positive Example

Children often mimic their parents’ behavior. Be a role model for your family by demonstrating good oral hygiene habits. When your kids see you taking care of your teeth, they are more likely to follow suit. Brush and floss together as a family to make it a fun and bonding experience.

Maintain Good Oral Health with Time Effective Habits

Maintaining oral health in a busy family can be challenging, but these healthy habits are essential for overall well-being. By establishing a routine, using the right tools, teaching proper techniques, and making small but impactful changes to your family’s diet and habits, you can ensure that everyone in your household enjoys healthy and beautiful smiles.

Dr. Dalesandro and Associates

Are you in search of top-notch dental care in Tucson? Look no further than Dr. Dalesandro & Associates. Our highly skilled team is dedicated to addressing all your dental needs, whether routine check-ups, emergency treatments, or preventive care.

Our exceptional team consists of compassionate Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants who not only excel in their profession but also extend a warm welcome to patients of all age groups, from the youngest members of your family to adults.

Whether you require preventive treatments like regular cleanings and check-ups or more extensive procedures such as cavity fillings or immediate assistance for dental emergencies, rest assured, we’ve got you covered.

At our Tucson dental practice, your comfort and confidence in your smile are our top priorities. Our unwavering commitment to cleanliness and hygiene ensures a safe and inviting environment for your dental appointments.

Don’t wait any longer to take the first step toward optimal oral health. The caring team at Dr. Dalesandro’s is ready to assist you.

For comprehensive resources and information, explore our website. Your journey to a healthier smile begins with us!

The Connection Between Oral Health and Overall Health

oral health

When we think about health, our minds often drift towards maintaining a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep. However, there is an important aspect of our well-being that we sometimes overlook: oral health.

Surprisingly, our oral health is closely intertwined with our overall health; neglecting one can profoundly affect the other. In this blog, we will explore the significant connection between oral health and overall health and understand why it is crucial to prioritize dental care as an essential component of our overall well-being.

The Oral-Systemic Link

The mouth acts as the gateway to the body, and oral health plays a vital role in maintaining an individual’s overall health. Oral health problems such as poor hygiene and untreated oral diseases can contribute to various systemic health issues.

The oral-systemic link refers to the bidirectional relationship between oral health and overall health, where problems in one area can influence the other.

Cardiovascular Health

Numerous studies have found a correlation between oral health and cardiovascular disease.

Poor oral hygiene can lead to gum inflammation and periodontal disease, allowing oral bacteria to enter the bloodstream. These bacteria can cause inflammation throughout the body, including the blood vessels, potentially increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular complications.


oral health

Diabetes and oral health have a significant connection.

Individuals with diabetes are more susceptible to gum disease due to a weakened immune system and impaired blood sugar control. Conversely, gum disease can make it harder to control blood sugar levels, leading to complications in diabetes management. Thus, maintaining good oral hygiene and avoiding worsening oral health is crucial for individuals with diabetes to prevent oral infections.

Respiratory Health

The health of our respiratory system can also be affected by our oral health. Poor oral hygiene, such as gum disease and tooth decay, can contribute to respiratory infections like pneumonia.

Bacteria from the mouth can be inhaled into the digestive and respiratory tracts, causing inflammation and increasing the likelihood of respiratory complications, particularly in individuals with compromised immune systems.

Pregnancy and Birth Complications

Oral health is of utmost importance for pregnant women. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can increase the risk of gum disease, which, if left untreated, can lead to complications like preterm birth and low birth weight.

Taking care of oral health during pregnancy is crucial for the mother and the baby’s well-being.

Inflammation and Chronic Diseases

Chronic inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, certain cancers, and inflammatory bowel diseases have been linked to poor oral health. The chronic inflammation associated with gum disease can contribute to the overall inflammatory burden in the body, potentially exacerbating these conditions.

Maintaining Good Oral Health

Now that we understand the connection between oral health and overall health, it becomes clear that maintaining good oral hygiene is essential. Here are some key practices for maintaining your optimal oral health workforce:

  1. Brush your teeth at least twice a day using fluoride toothpaste.
  2. Floss daily to remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth.
  3. Limit sugary and acidic food and drinks that can contribute to tooth decay.
  4. Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups, professional cleanings, and early detection of oral health issues.
  5. Avoid tobacco products, as they significantly increase the risk of oral cancer and gum disease.
  6. Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and nutrients that promote oral health.

Maintaining Health and Well Being

vector image of teeth

Taking care of our oral health is not just about having a bright smile; it is an integral part of maintaining overall health and well-being by avoiding oral and systemic diseases.

The connection between oral health and various systemic diseases highlights the importance of regular dental care and good oral hygiene practices. By prioritizing oral health, we can reduce the risk of developing serious health issues and improve our quality of life.

Consult with Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates are exceptionally qualified Tucson dentists to care for all your general, emergency, and preventative dentistry needs.

In addition, our staff of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants are warm and professional. Plus, we serve multiple family members, from young children to adults. Whatever your needs, from preventative care to restorative such as cavity fillings to emergency first aid services for accidents, we do it all. 

The Family Dental Practice Tucson Trusts

At our Tucson dentist office we strive to make our clients feel safe and proud of their smiles! We keep our dental office clean and ready for your appointment. 

Contact us today and set up your first visit with the Dr. Dalesandro dental care team by continuing to explore our website.

How to Choose the Right Toothbrush and Toothpaste for Your Family

Maintaining good oral hygiene is crucial for a healthy and happy smile, and choosing the right toothbrush and toothpaste is an integral part of that. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. In this article, we’ll provide some helpful tips on choosing the right dental care products for your family.

toothbrush and toothpaste

Choosing the Right Toothbrush

While toothpaste can contribute to the effectiveness of toothbrushing by providing additional benefits such as fluoride or antimicrobial agents, the mechanical action of brushing with a toothbrush is what ultimately removes plaque and debris from teeth and gums, making it a more crucial factor for maintaining good oral health.

When it comes to toothbrushes, there are several factors to consider:


When choosing the right bristle hardness for a toothbrush, it’s important to consider individual factors such as the condition of the teeth and gums, personal preference, and brushing technique.

Soft bristles are generally recommended for people with sensitive teeth, receding gums, or a history of gum disease, as they are less likely to cause damage or irritation.

Medium bristle toothbrushes can be a good choice for those with healthy teeth and gums who want a little more scrubbing power. However, for most people, a soft bristled toothbrushes is still the safest and most effective option.

A hard bristle brush head is generally not recommended as it can cause enamel erosion, gum recession, and tooth sensitivity over time. It’s always a good idea to consult with a dentist or dental hygienist to determine the best toothbrush and brushing technique to keep your teeth healthy.

Size and Shape

Toothbrushes come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and it’s important to choose one that is comfortable and easy to use. Look for a brush with a head that can easily reach all areas of your mouth to remove food particles and plaque.

Electric vs. Manual

man using electric toothbrush

Both manual and electric toothbrushes are effective at removing plaque and promoting good oral hygiene, but there are some differences between the two.

Manual toothbrushes are affordable, widely available, and easy to use. They require no batteries or charging and come in a variety of bristle styles and sizes. However, using a manual toothbrush requires proper technique and can be difficult for people with limited mobility or dexterity.

On the other hand, an electric toothbrush can be more expensive and require batteries or charging, but they can provide a more thorough and efficient cleaning. They also often come with features like timers or pressure sensors to ensure proper brushing technique.

Ultimately, both brushes can prevent against tooth decay and gum disease when used properly.

Choosing the Right Toothpaste

Toothpaste comes in many different types, flavors, and formulations. As discussed above, brushing technique is more important for overall oral health than the type of toothpaste used, but each comes with a variety of benefits that can include that fresh-mouth feeling.

Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing the right toothpaste for your family:


Fluoride toothpaste

Look for a toothpaste that contains fluoride, as it helps to strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. However, consult your dentist first if you prefer a natural or fluoride-free option.


Whitening toothpastes are formulated to remove surface stains on teeth and make them appear brighter. They typically contain mild abrasives and chemicals like hydrogen peroxide or baking soda that work to break down stains and improve the appearance of teeth.

However, it’s important to note that whitening toothpastes may not be effective for deep stains or discoloration caused by factors like genetics or certain medications.

Some whitening toothpaste can be abrasive and may cause enamel erosion or tooth sensitivity if used excessively or incorrectly. It’s best to consult with a dentist before using a whitening toothpaste to ensure it’s safe and appropriate for individual needs.

Toothpaste for Sensitive teeth

If you or a family member has sensitive teeth, look for a toothpaste that is specifically designed for sensitive teeth. These formulas contain ingredients that can help to reduce sensitivity and discomfort.


Toothpaste comes in a variety of flavors, from mint to fruit to bubblegum. Choose a flavor that your family enjoys, as this can make brushing more enjoyable and encourage good habits.

When choosing the right toothbrush and toothpaste for your family, consider factors such as bristle softness, size and shape, electric vs. manual, fluoride, whitening, sensitivity, and flavor. And don’t forget to consult with your dentist for personalized recommendations based on your family’s unique needs. By choosing the right products and practicing good oral hygiene habits, you can help ensure that your family’s smiles stay healthy and happy for years to come.

FAQs on Oral Hygiene

Why do my teeth feel sensitive?

Teeth feel sensitive due to worn enamel or exposed roots, often caused by aggressive brushing or gum recession. Maintain gentle brushing with a soft-bristle toothbrush to alleviate sensitivity.

Which areas get missed when I brush my teeth?

The most commonly missed areas while brushing are the gum line, back molars, and tongue. Use proper brushing techniques and consider a toothbrush with a small head to reach all areas effectively.

Should I be using a different toothbrush?

If you’re experiencing discomfort or inadequate cleaning, consider switching to a toothbrush with softer bristles or an electric toothbrush for improved results.

How often do I need professional cleanings?

Professional cleanings should be scheduled every six months, but some individuals with specific dental conditions may require more frequent visits.

Why do my gums bleed when I brush?

Gums bleed when brushing due to inflammation caused by plaque buildup or improper brushing technique. Maintain consistent oral hygiene and use a soft-bristle toothbrush with gentle pressure to reduce bleeding.

Do dentists recommend soft or medium toothbrushes?

Most dentists and dental hygienists recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush for daily brushing. Soft bristles are gentle on the gums and teeth, and they are less likely to cause damage or irritation than medium or hard bristles.

Consult with Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

man putting toothpaste on toothbrush

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates are exceptionally qualified Tucson dentists to care for all your general, emergency, and preventative dentistry needs.

In addition, our staff of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants are warm and professional. Plus, we serve multiple family members, from young children to adults. Whatever your needs from preventative care, to restorative such as cavity fillings, to even emergency first aid services for accidents, we do it all. 

The Family Dental Practice Tucson Trusts

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

At our Tucson dentist office we strive to make our clients feel safe and proud of their smiles! We keep our dental office clean and ready for your appointment. 

Contact us today and set up your first visit with the Dr. Dalesandro dental care team by continuing to explore our website.

Preventing Tooth Decay: A Comprehensive Guide for Tucson Families

tooth decay

Maintaining healthy teeth is essential for good overall health. It can be challenging to prevent tooth decay, especially for children.

Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children and can lead to pain, infections, and tooth loss. This guide will explore ways to prevent tooth decay and keep your family’s teeth healthy.

Brush Twice a Day

Brushing your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste is the most effective way to prevent tooth decay. The American Dental Association encourages brushing for at least two minutes, focusing on all surfaces of your teeth, including the front, back, and chewing surfaces.

Disease control is essential to preventing tooth decay, as regular brushing, flossing, and dental checkups can help detect and address early signs of decay before they progress into more serious dental health issues.

Encourage your children to brush their teeth by making it fun, playing music or using a timer, and rewarding them for good brushing habits.

Floss Daily

Flossing is just as important as brushing in preventing tooth decay. Flossing removes food particles and plaque from between teeth and along the gum line, where a toothbrush can’t reach.

Teach your children how to floss correctly, and make sure they floss at least once a day.

Limit Sugary Foods and Drinks

Sugary foods and drinks can increase the risk of tooth decay. Bacteria in the mouth feed on sugar and produce acid that can erode tooth enamel. Encourage your family to limit sugary snacks and drinks, such as soda, candy, and fruit juice.

If you or your child indulge in sweets, brush your teeth afterward or rinse your mouth with water.

Drink Plenty of Water for good Oral Health

Drinking plenty of water can help prevent tooth decay and by washing away food particles and bacteria in the mouth. By washing away acidic bacteria, water can also help strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. Encourage your family to drink water throughout the day, especially after meals.

Schedule Regular Dental Visits

regular dental visit

A regular dental checkup schedule is essential for maintaining healthy teeth and preventing dental decay. Your dentist can detect early signs of decay and provide dental cleanings and other treatments to prevent further damage. Schedule a dental appointment for your family members to receive professional cleanings every six months, or as recommended by your dentist.

Consider Preventive Dental Care Products

Fluoride is a mineral that can strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. Use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash to help prevent tooth decay. Your dentist may also recommend fluoride treatments for children and adults at a higher risk of tooth decay.

Consider Dental Sealants

If your child has lost all their primary teeth, or baby teeth, sealants may be a good option. Dental sealants are a thin, protective coating applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. Sealants can help prevent tooth decay by sealing off the crevices where food particles can get trapped before a cavity occurs.

Consider dental sealants for your children’s teeth, especially if they are prone to cavities.

Address Dry Mouth

A dry mouth can increase the risk of tooth decay by reducing the saliva in the mouth. Saliva helps wash away food particles and neutralize the acid produced by bacteria in the mouth. Address dry mouth by drinking plenty of water, using a humidifier, and avoiding tobacco and alcohol.

Preventing tooth decay requires a combination of good oral hygiene habits, a healthy diet, and regular dental checkups. Encourage your family to brush and floss regularly, limit sugary foods and drinks, drink plenty of water, and visit the dentist regularly. Following these tips can help keep your family’s teeth healthy and prevent tooth decay.

Tooth Decay in Children FAQs:

Can I reverse my child’s tooth decay?

If caught early enough, tooth decay can be reversed. Good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, daily flossing, and reducing sugar intake, are necessary for a child to reverse a cavity at this stage.

What is the number one reason kids get cavities?

Bacteria is the number one culprit of tooth decay, which occurs when carbohydrate-containing foods like sugars and starches are left on the teeth. Examples of these foods include milk, soda, candy, fruit juices, cereals, and bread.

Prevent Dental Disease in Tucson with Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

tooth pain

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates are exceptionally qualified Tucson dentists to care for all your general, emergency, and preventative dentistry needs.

In addition, our staff of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants are warm and professional. Plus, we serve multiple family members, from young children to adults. Whatever your needs, from preventative care to restorative such as cavity fillings to emergency first aid services for accidents, we do it all. 

The Family Dental Practice Tucson Trusts

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

At our Tucson dentist office we strive to make our clients feel safe and proud of their smiles! We keep our dental office clean and ready for your appointment. 

Contact us today and set up your first visit with the Dr. Dalesandro dental care team by continuing to explore our website.

preventive dentistry

What is Preventative Dental Treatment?

Preventative dentistry includes the routine maintenance of oral health, including services such as teeth cleanings, oral exams, and dental X-rays.

Why Receive Preventive Dental Services?

Preventive dental services are described as preventive because they allow your dentist to monitor your oral health, reinforce good brushing habits, prevent gum disease and tooth decay through various treatments, and detect early signs of dental health problems.

Your oral health is a cornerstone of your body’s overall health. Medical research has found poor oral health to be a precursor or indicator of more severe health complications, such as diabetes, osteoporosis, heart disease, and stroke.

Preventative dentistry services and good oral health habits help to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth (an entry point to your digestive and respiratory tracks) free from dangerous amounts of harmful bacteria.

Preventive Dental Care for Oral Health

The American Dental Association recommends:

  • Brushing twice a day
  • Cleaning between your teeth daily
  • Eating a healthy diet that limits sugar
  • Seeing your dentist regularly

Proper dental care will go a long way to prevent common ailments like gum disease and even more severe dental diseases like oral cancer.

Beyond good oral hygiene habits at home, many preventive dentistry services go above and beyond to protect your smile, such as fluoride treatments, which will strengthen your teeth’s enamel, making them less susceptible to cavities, and dental sealants, which are applied to the chewing surfaces of the teeth as an extra barrier.

These are routine aspects of preventive oral health care that can be administered by your dentist.

Preventive Dentistry FAQs:

What are the Types of Preventive Dentistry?

The five most common types of preventive dental care include regular teeth brushing and professional cleanings, oral examinations from your dentist, dental sealants, oral cancer screenings, and mouth guards made to protect teeth during high-impact activities or chronic teeth grinding.

What are Preventive Dental Materials?

Materials used in preventive dentistry are designed to prevent decay, periodontal disease, and other oral diseases. Fluoride may be a liquid, gel, or varnish applied to teeth, and sealants are made from medical-grade resin.

Why is Preventive Dental Care Important?

Preventive dental care is essential because it can allow a patient to avoid cavities, gum disease, and other oral health issues, along with the associated cost if the patient does not have comprehensive dental insurance. To avoid the pain caused by tooth decay, preventive dentistry services are the first line of defense.

Preventive Dentistry Experts in Tucson, AZ

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates are exceptionally qualified Tucson dentists to care for all your general, emergency, and preventative dentistry needs. 

In addition, our staff of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants are warm and professional. Plus, we serve multiple family members, from young children to adults. Whatever your needs, from preventative care to restorative such as cavity fillings to emergency first aid services for accidents, we do it all. 

The Family Dental Practice Tucson Trusts

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

At our Tucson dentist office, we strive to make our clients feel safe and proud of their smiles! We keep our dental office clean and ready for your appointment. 

Contact us today and set up your first visit with the Dr. Dalesandro dental care team by continuing to explore our website.

What to Do in a Dental Emergency?

dental emergency

The best way to prevent the need for emergency dental treatment is to receive regular dental care, including check ups and cleanings, but some instances simply cannot be avoided even with proper care, such as a dreaded chipped tooth.

While inconvenient, receiving dental emergency treatment when you need it most can be life changing for the look, function, feel, and health of your teeth for years to come.

What are Dental Emergencies?

Outside of chipped teeth, a few signs and symptoms qualify for urgent dental care. These include:

  • A lost tooth
  • Sudden or extreme tooth pain
  • Loose teeth
  • Signs of infection
  • Bleeding from the mouth or gums

Beginning with chipped teeth, many patients may worry if they don’t have the tooth fragment to reattach. Thankfully, an emergency dentist is used to creating a natural-looking replacement for the missing tooth enamel from dental materials. The emergency dentist services provided will leave you with a tooth that is nearly indistinguishable from the original in both form and function.

chipped teeth emergency

If the broken or chipped teeth occur in a child who does not yet have permanent adult teeth, the same process may still be recommended to allow for proper development of the bite and pallet. Even if the tooth is not permanent, a broken tooth can still create issues if left unattended.

Unlike with a chipped tooth, holding on to a lost tooth until you can see your dentist is ideal. It is sometimes possible to reattach a tooth that has been knocked out, but how you handle it is important. First, try only to touch and handle the tooth by the crown, not by the sensitive, living roots. Do not scrub or brush the tooth, as this could damage the roots. If there’s any foreign debris on the tooth, you may gently rinse the tooth in a bowl of lukewarm water (do not rinse under running water) for no more than 10 seconds.

dental emergency loose teeth

Then, try to insert the tooth back into its socket until you can get to a dentist who can provide emergency dental care. If you can’t put it back into its socket, leave it between your cheek and gums or submerge in your saliva. There are also solutions made to preserve a knocked-out tooth. It is important to keep it moist and handle with extreme care until you can receive dental services.

For loose teeth, see your dentist as soon as possible and stick to a regimen of soft foods, do gentle brushing to keep the area clean, and try your best not to touch or mess with the tooth. This could lead to further damage and dislodging.

When to see a Dentist for Tooth Pain

An occasional tooth ache that resolves quickly on its own may not be a cause for concern, but extreme tooth pain that comes on suddenly is a sign to make an emergency dental appointment. Even if the pain is mild or moderate but does not go away in a day or two, it’s time to see your dentist.

dental emergency tooth pain

Oral pain could be a sign of dental infections that require immediate treatment to preserve oral health. An infection may also be accompanied by symptoms of illness, such as fever, swollen lymph nodes, and headache.

If you’re experiencing the symptom of bleeding gums that persist beyond occasional bleeding from brushing or other obvious cause, it’s time to call your dentist.

Emergency Dental Care in Tucson AZ

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates are exceptionally qualified Tucson dentists to care for all your general and emergency dentistry needs. 

In addition, our staff of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants are warm and professional. Plus, we serve multiple family members, from young children to adults. Whatever your needs from preventative care, to restorative such as cavity fillings, to even emergency first aid services for accidents, we do it all. 

The Family Dental Practice Tucson Trusts

Dr. Dalesandro & Associates

At our Tucson dentist office we strive to make our clients feel safe and proud of their smiles! We keep our dental office clean and ready for your appointment. 

Contact us today and set up your first visit with the Dr. Dalesandro dental care team by continuing to explore our website.

why is flossing important

Why Is Flossing Important for Oral Health?

Almost everyone hears that they should floss their teeth at some point. Whether your parents told you when you were young or your dentist recently told you, it can be hard to remember to keep up with it without knowing why it’s so crucial. This article will answer the question of “why is flossing important” and recommend timely preventive dental care in Tucson.

Why Should I Floss?

If you brush your teeth regularly and maintain good oral hygiene, you may wonder if regularly flossing is necessary. Although many people don’t practice the habit, the answer to this question is a definite yes. The primary reason is that although your toothbrush can effectively clean most of your teeth, it can’t reach every part of the surface.

In particular, toothbrushes struggle to reach the spaces between your teeth, especially if your teeth are close together. Dental floss allows you to clean this surface, reducing the risk of tooth decay and other issues. Since other tools cannot reach these areas, dental floss or alternatives like water picks are among the most vital elements of oral hygiene.

Benefits of Flossing

Regular flossing can improve oral health in multiple ways, from reducing bad breath to preventing infection. However, your teeth and gums can benefit from this practice in different ways, so read the following sections to learn more about the answer to the question, “Why is flossing important?”

Tooth Health

Most common tooth problems, including cavities, result from harmful bacteria and plaque building up on the surface of your teeth. While brushing removes these materials from the front and back of your teeth, they can continue to thrive on the sides of your teeth. Flossing daily can remove this plaque and keep your teeth strong and healthy for longer.

Gum Health

While most people think about their teeth when they consider flossing, the process is just as vital to the health of your gums. Gum tissue is sensitive, and gum disease can develop if you continually expose your gums to bacteria. Fortunately, flossing helps to keep your gums clean and free of infection.

Improve Your Oral Health Today

While maintaining good tooth care practices at home is crucial, maintaining your oral health also requires the help of a dental professional. If you need preventative dental services in Tucson, Arizona, there is no better option than the dental offices of Drs. Dalesandro, Derickson, & Weege. Our welcoming office and friendly team strive to provide the highest quality service at an affordable price and a comfortable atmosphere for all our patients.
By reading this article, you found a definitive answer to the question, “Why is flossing important?” Now that you know the vital role flossing plays in oral hygiene, you can explore our website to learn how you can prevent cavities and find answers to other common questions. Then, when you’re ready to improve your oral health, call the dental offices of Drs. Dalesandro, Derickson, & Weege at (520) 327-5993 for the best dental services in Tucson, Arizona. 

Everything You Need to Know About Preventive Dentistry

Preventive Dentistry - Dentist Using TechAccording to the American Dental Association, there were a total of 2.1 million emergency visits related to dental conditions in 2017, with tooth decay and periodontal disease being the more common reasons. Dental diseases could be prevented by practicing proper dental care as well as preventive dentistry.

Preventive Dentistry is the action taken by a patient to promote good oral health and a bright smile for years to come. Preventative dentistry can include anything from eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of water, daily brushing and flossing, and ensuring you keep up with your twice-yearly check-ups.

Preventive Dental Care

Preventive dental care is a broad term that refers to the preventative dental procedures used to treat dental diseases at an earlier stage. It also includes at-home oral care, including daily brushing, flossing, and chairside treatments by dentists. The goal is to keep your teeth and gums healthy, preventing tooth loss.

What is Considered Preventive Dentistry?

Preventive dentistry can be any number of services provided during your regular visit to prevent future oral health problems.

Here are some examples of preventive dentistry:

  • X rays

X-rays allow dentists to see potential problem areas that your dentist can not see with regular oral exams.

  • Regular Check-ups

It’s important that you regularly visit your dentist for a check-up even if you don’t have any pressing concerns. Since checkups can help spot early signs of cavities and gum diseases, the American Dental Association recommends getting checkups every six months.

  • Dental Cleaning

Brushing cleans the bacteria from your teeth but not always and not as effectively. Dental cleaning, on the other hand, removes the buildup of plaque and bacteria from the teeth and under the gums tissue. Depending on the condition of your teeth, your dentist may suggest cleaning every 6-12 months.

  • Dental Sealants

Sealants are protective coatings that your dentist paints on the chewing surfaces of the molars to prevent the formation of cavities.

  • Fluoride Treatment

The dentist applies fluoride treatments in the form of gel, solution, foam, or varnish to teeth, especially for people with a higher risk of tooth decay or erosion.

Goals of Preventive Dentistry

The goal of preventive care is to maintain oral health through proper hygiene practices and regular dental checkups. With this approach, invasive treatments like fillings are kept to a minimum. It also helps identify early signs of periodontal disease and other debilitating health conditions.

Benefits of Preventive Dental Care

Preventive dental care goes beyond deep cleaning and dental hygiene. Here are a few benefits of preventive care.

  • A dental hygienist can help prevent cavity formation with the help of deep cleaning and sealants.
  • Deep cleaning can also prevent gum diseases. Likewise, with regular visits, your dentist can identify the signs at an early stage and take preventive steps.
  • Bad breath isn’t just about poor hygiene. It can also be a sign of tooth decay or infections. Your dentist can help identify the reasons and treat them.
  • Your dentist can help catch jaw problems like bruxism and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.
  • Regular visits can help identify the dental problems early, thereby minimizing costs.
  • Dentists also help promote good oral hygiene habits such as brushing and flossing.
  • Fluoride strengthens the teeth and fights off bacteria. Your dentist will apply a fluoride treatment on the teeth to combat natural erosion.
  • For children playing sports, dentists can supply a mouth guard to prevent injuries.

Cost of Preventive Dental Care

Preventive Dental Care CostThe cost of preventive dental care for a child costs anywhere from $65-$100 per visit. Fluoride treatments cost $30-$35 per tooth until two years, and a sealant treatment at $35-$40 per tooth.

For an adult of 21 years or older, a regular checkup and cleaning cost $150-$250, and restorative services like root canals, cavity fillings, chipped teeth, resin restorations, etc., cost as much as $750 – $1500 additionally.

A dental plan helps make dental care more affordable over the years.

Importance of Preventive Dentistry

Preventive dentistry is the practice of maintaining good oral health, including dental checkups and teeth cleanings, so that any potential issues are identified and treated earlier on. During your visit, the dentist will examine you for signs of cavities, gum disease, etc., and advice you on preventive dental care.

Here are some of the reasons why preventive dental care is important.

  • A dentist performs a thorough checkup of your teeth and gums, thereby identifying any budding health concern.
  • It is cheaper to have preventive measures taken rather than root canals or teeth reconstruction, which may cost thousands of dollars.
  • Your dental hygienist can guide you with good oral hygiene practices, from a toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash to the right technique to clean your teeth.
  • Preventive dental checkups can also help identify health conditions such as diabetes, soft tissue diseases such as oral cancer, etc.

Key Steps in Preventive Dentistry

The key point with preventive dentistry is to do everything within your reach to improve your oral health.

Here are a few steps to help you with preventive care:

  • Eat mindfully and reduce your sugar consumption.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Eat a balanced diet so that your body gets all the nutrients naturally.
  • Dental sealant treatments for children to prevent decay.
  • Fluoride treatments for children under 18 years old.
  • Brush twice a day and floss every day.
  • Make sure you have regular dental checkups and deep teeth cleanings twice a year.

Nutrition and Oral Health

The food that we intake impacts our teeth and gums; A diet rich in carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, micro, and macronutrients is beneficial for the teeth and the general health of the body. Any imbalance can lead to malnutrition and compromised oral health.

A deficit and an oversupply of the nutrients can lead to:

  • Erosion – A diet rich in phosphoric acid, citric acid, ascorbic acid, tartaric acid, carbonic acid, and malic acid can cause erosion. These acids can be found in soft drinks, wine, fruit juices, herbal teas, etc.
  • Caries – Dental caries or decay happens when your diet is packed with dietary sugars like sucrose, fructose, glucose, maltose, etc. A high-fiber diet helps in preventing decay by absorbing the sugars.
  • Periodontal disease – Deficiency of nutrients such as calcium, folic acid, and vitamins A, C, and E can cause gum disease.
  • Oral cancer – While cancer is caused by genetic and environmental factors, a diet rich in antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, E, beta carotene, and selenium reduces the risk.

Ways to Improve Your Dental Health

While preventive dental services can go a long way in maintaining dental health, much of the care starts with you. Adopting healthy dental habits at a young age can help you prevent oral problems such as cavities, gum disease, etc.

  • Preventive Dentistry - Ways to Improve Dental HealthKeep your teeth clean by brushing twice a day- morning and night with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush. Your dentist can recommend the right products and instruct you on the proper technique.
  • Flossing once a day can stimulate the gums and reduce plaque.
  • Clean your tongue every time you brush to prevent the buildup of plaque.
  • Your toothbrush should be soft; stiff bristles can affect your enamel and cause the gums to recede.
  • Incorporate antibacterial mouthwash in your oral health care to rinse out the food particles.
  • Eat a nutritious and balanced meal; cut down on soda and sugary foods.
  • Avoid smoking and using tobacco products.
  • Use a mouthguard when playing contact sports.
  • Ask your dentist for a bite night guard if you happen to grind your teeth at night.
  • Visit your dentist twice a year for regular oral health checkups.

Connection Between Oral Health and Overall Health

Oral health is beyond healthy teeth and gums. Poor oral health affects your general health and wellness; A study by the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry states that people with gum diseases were more likely to die from heart disease and stroke.

Oral health care such as brushing your teeth and flossing helps keep the bacteria under control. In the absence of oral care, the bacteria can lead to gum diseases and tooth decay.

Poor oral care may lead to the following health conditions.

  • Diabetes: Diabetic patients with gum diseases were more reliant on insulin. Diabetes can reduce the body’s resistance to infection.
  • Endocarditis: It is the infection of the inner walls of the heart. Bacteria from the other parts of the mouth spreads to the heart through the bloodstream.
  • Cardiovascular disease: Inflammation of the gum tissue is related to heart disease and stroke.
  • Pregnancy and birth complications: Periodontal disease is linked to pregnancy complications, low birth weight, and premature birth.
  • Pneumonia: When the bacteria from the lungs enter the lungs, it results in pneumonia and respiratory diseases.
  • Osteoporosis: Certain drugs used to treat osteoporosis can weaken the jaw.
  • Alzheimer’s: The oral health deteriorates as Alzheimer’s progresses.

Apart from that, medications such as antihistamines, decongestants, diuretics, painkillers, and antidepressants reduce saliva flow.

Preventive Dentistry for Children

Reports from the CDC state that 40% of US children between the ages of 2-11 and 59% of the children aged 12-19 are affected by dental cavities. Since they are preventable through proper oral hygiene, preventive dentistry has become more critical than ever.

Preventive dental care for children starts as soon as the first tooth breaks out. The sooner you begin preventive dentistry, the more the chances for avoiding oral problems. Visit the dentist before the first birthday. He/she will guide you with proper dental techniques and products.

Preventive Dental Services for Children

Children are more prone to cavities than adults. The candies, juice boxes, and treats are sure to cause havoc on their tender teeth.

Here are the most common preventive dental services available for children:

  • Teeth cleanings:

Food particles can stick between the teeth leading to the formation of plaque. Brushing and flossing though essential is not enough, and you need periodic cleaning of the teeth to remove plaque and tartar, thereby preventing the formation of cavities.

  • Dental Sealants:

A sealant is a transparent material applied to the surfaces of the teeth to prevent the spread of cavities. After the sealant is in place, children can consume food without it sticking to the teeth.

  • Fluoride Treatment:

Fluoride is a mineral known to prevent cavities. The dental hygienist will apply fluoride to the teeth to increase strength.

  • Mouth Guards:

Contact sports can often result in an injury resulting in chipped or broken teeth. Mouthguards are devices custom made to suit the shape of the children’s gums and teeth to protect them from physical contact.

  • Space Maintainers:

Children tend to lose their milk teeth before their permanent ones erupt. The space maintainers help to hold the space open until new ones emerge. These are custom-made for every child.

Preventive Dental Care Provided by Your Insurance Company

Twice a year, dental visits are essential for preventive dental care. However, without a proper dental plan, the cost of the checkups and treatments can add up to astronomical costs.

Most dental insurance plans cover dentistry services such that you do not have to pay or just copays. With co-pays, you pay half the cost for the services while the insurance company pays the other half.

Dental Insurance: Coverage

Preventive Dentistry - Dental & Health Insurance CardsPreventive dental care covered by your insurance plans depends on the dental insurance company. While the below may be a standard indicator, you may want to ask your dentist or the dental provider about your plan.

Most insurance plans cover the following:

  • Dental visits twice a year for oral exams
  • Teeth cleanings twice a year
  • Fluoride treatment, which is mostly plan-dependent
  • Dental sealant, which is also plan-dependent
  • Annual X-rays


Any treatment that helps prevent decay, gum diseases, and other problems are considered preventive dentistry services. It can be anything from regularly brushing your teeth to cleanings, fluoride treatments, mouth guards, and more. Moreover, poor oral health also leads to health conditions such as heart attack, stroke, respiratory diseases, etc.

Most insurance plans cover preventive dental services like dental visits, x-rays, etc. However, you may want to talk to a life insurance provider about your plan and coverage.

Not taking your at-home preventive dental care seriously has its consequences. When someone has poor oral hygiene, this creates a situation where they accumulate plaque build-up around the teeth and gums. This then causes the gums to become red and inflamed. Plaque is filled with bacteria, which is what causes those issues along with tooth decay and gum disease. On top of making sure you take care of these care tasks at home, it’s very important to schedule a meeting with your dentist every six months. Schedule your appointment with Dr. Dalesandro today. He has many years of experience in the field of preventive dentistry.

Other timely articles you may find helpful are:

How Often Should I Brush My Teeth?

How often should i brush my teeth.Proper dental hygiene plays a critical role in sustaining an overall state of well-being. The question of “how often should I brush my teeth?” may seem simple; however, it’s a little more complicated than you might think. Your diet and daily habits will determine the frequency at which you should brush your teeth for starters.

High risk to dental issues

An example would be those who smoke cigarettes need to brush their teeth more than someone who is smoke-free. This is a true statement as cigarette smoke covers your teeth in harmful substances like tar.
Aside from the frequency at which you brush your teeth, you also need to use the correct brushing method. Applying too much force when brushing your teeth can damage them further. Light and gentle strokes are the best way to clean any food particles or substance build-ups on your teeth.

How often should I brush my teeth?

As per the American Dental Association, you should brush at least twice a day. The timing at which you decide to brush isn’t necessary; however, if you want to brush your teeth after eating, you should wait at least 30 minutes. The recommendation is that you brush before each meal and before bed.

Brushing alone isn’t going to solve your dental hygiene problems. A proper dental hygiene routine consists of first brushing, then flossing, and finally rinsing your mouth out with an antiseptic. Regardless of when you brush your teeth, remember the 30-minute rule.

How long to wait after brushing your teeth

If you brush before you eat, wait 30 minutes until you eat, if you brush after, wait 30 mins before consuming any liquids or solids. In case you’re wondering, alcohol-free mouthwash is best, you should also try to use fluoride toothpaste as much as possible.

To achieve maximum dental health, try to get a professional cleaning at least twice a year. Professional dental cleanings act as a preventative against tooth decay and deterioration.

Making sure your teeth stay white for a long time

Forgetting to brush every once in a while is normal; however, once it becomes a habit, you need to implement strategies to ensure you stay on track. Try to set a timer on your phone to be reminded of when to brush your teeth without having to think about it.

To answer the question is, twice a day minimal. If you can manage to brush your teeth at least three times a day, that’s even better.

People Also Ask

Q: Is brushing your teeth three times a day too much?
A: brushing your meal at least three times a day or after each meal has shows no signs of damage to your teeth. Remember, brushing your teeth hard or roughly can damage you, regardless of the frequency at which you brush them.

Q: Is it OK to brush once a day?
A: While it’s recommended that you brush your teeth at least two times a day, cleaning them once in an adequately timed manner is also acceptable. The more you brush your teeth, the healthier they will become over time, so try to brush them two times a day.

Q: Is it better to brush before or after breakfast?
A: The short answer is before breakfast; this allows your teeth to be cleansed of any build-up before adding more one. If you want to brush after breakfast, wait at least 30 minutes.

Understanding how often should I brush my teeth

Use this article to help stay on top of your oral health to avoid issues like cavity formation, root decay, staining, and more. Brushing your teeth is one of the simplest ways to maintain a healthy mouth and good health in general, don’t take it for granted. Contact Dr. Dalesandro for dental services in Tucson, Arizona.

Frequently Asked Questions

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What Are the Main Causes of Dental Problems?

Poor oral hygiene is a main cause of dental problems like tooth decay, periodontal (gum) disease, alveolar bone loss, and ultimately tooth loss. Why Be Concerned About Your Dental and Oral Health?

Maintaining proper dental and oral hygiene is an essential part of your overall health and well-being. Conversely, poor oral hygiene can lead to tooth decay, periodontal (gum) disease, alveolar bone loss, and ultimately tooth loss. Compromised oral health, especially for an extended period of time, has even been linked with an increased risk of developing other serious health conditions such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. With so much at stake, then, how can you protect yourself against the common pitfalls leading to such serious health issues? This article will help answer that question as we consider the most common causes of serious dental issues and how best to avoid them.

Tooth Decay – The ‘Silent’ Epidemic

The CDC notes dental cavities are the most common chronic disease among youth ages 6 to 19 and NBC reports an alarming 91% of American adults between 20 and 64 are affected by tooth decay. Sadly, too many people never even see it coming until it is nearly too late, even when their teeth had been trying to warn them for months. Tooth decay is the softening and eventual breakdown of your tooth enamel — the hard, protective outer layer of your teeth — and refers to the damage of the structure of the tooth caused by acids. This loss of tooth structure is known as acid erosion and occurs when plaque bacteria break down and digest carbohydrates (sugars) in your mouth. If this loss of minerals from the enamel is left untreated, a cavity (small hole in the tooth) can eventually occur. Without professional treatment, these holes tend to grow larger over time and eventually may end up destroying the entire tooth and surrounding tissue.

Main Causes of Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

  • Poor Oral Hygiene:  Not brushing your teeth regularly between meals allows a sticky film of bacteria known as plaque to form and build up on your teeth. When left untreated, irreparable damage may be caused to the enamel, and in time may ultimately lead to the permanent loss of gum tissue, bone, and teeth. That is why it is so important to brush your teeth regularly after every meal and floss at least once a day, in order to thoroughly remove all food particles and lingering sugars.
  • Plaque Formation:  When not removed on a regular basis, the plaque adheres to your teeth and continues to build up and harden over time, often turning into a more resistant substance called tartar. Also known as dental calculus, tartar is a crusty deposit that can trap stains on the teeth and cause discoloration. It creates a strong bond that can only be removed by a dental professional. Since sugar attracts harmful bacteria and lowers your mouth’s pH, it is therefore a major contributing factor to tooth decay and strongly recommended that one limits their intake of sugary snacks and drinks.
  • Plaque Bacteria and Acids:  While most of us don’t like to think about or admit it, bacteria naturally live in our mouth and like to hide in our teeth and gums. When harmful bacteria digest the carbohydrates that linger inside the mouth, acid forms to remove essential minerals from the tooth enamel. This destructive process is called demineralization and leaves the tooth exposed to further damage such as a cavity or dental abscess.
  • Chronic Dry Mouth:  Thankfully our mouth has a natural line of defense for demineralization. Saliva helps to constantly reverse this damage by means of a natural process called mineralization. The minerals in your saliva, such as calcium and phosphate, in addition to fluoride from toothpaste and drinking water, help the enamel repair itself by replacing minerals lost during an “acid attack.” If you are prone to or experience dry mouth frequently, click HERE to read about the various remedies proven to alleviate this condition.
  • Poor Diet:  Frequent snacking on foods high in sugar increases the amount of time your teeth are exposed to the dissolving effects of various acids, which make them more susceptible to tooth decay and gum disease. Because of their high nutritional value and added teeth-cleaning benefits, some of the best foods to snack on are fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as calcium-rich foods to promote strong teeth and bones. Chewing on crunchy vegetables, such as carrots and celery, helps get the salivary juices flowing, which in turn helps wash away plaque-causing bacteria and food particles.
  • Smoking & Tobacco Use: Tobacco use in any form — cigarettes, pipes, and smokeless (chewing) tobacco — raises your risk for gum disease, including severe gum disease called periodontitis. In fact, smokers have twice the risk for gum disease compared with a nonsmoker. Smoking weakens your body’s immune system, thus making it considerably less effective in fighting off infections such as gum and tooth infections. Once you have gum damage, smoking also makes it harder for your gums to heal.
  • Medical Problems:  Some types of cancer treatment that expose the head and neck to radiation can promote a tooth cavity by changing the makeup of the saliva to promote increased bacterial growth.

Now that we’ve thoroughly covered the main causes of dental problems and how best to avoid them, we can better appreciate that maintaining healthy teeth and gums is a very essential, lifelong commitment. The earlier you learn proper oral hygiene habits — such as brushing, flossing, and limiting your sugar intake — the easier it will be to avoid costly dental procedures and long-term health issues in the future. Applying the aforementioned recommendations not only promotes your overall health and well-being, but it also helps improve the quality of your life now and many years to come!

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