It’s easy to keep your teeth and gums in good health. A simple routine of daily teeth cleaning, good eating habits and regular dental visits can help prevent tooth decay (cavities) and gum disease.


Your teeth are covered with a sticky film of bacteria called plaque (sounds like PLAK). If you brush twice a day and floss once a day, you can remove most of the harmful plaque and bacteria. But if plaque stays on the teeth, it will eventually harden into tarter. It is harder to brush and floss when tarter builds up near the gumline.

Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste to help prevent tooth decay. Select a toothbrush that feels comfortable in your hand and in your mouth. Replace your toothbrush every three or four months, or sooner if the bristles become frayed. If you have hand, arm or shoulder problems that limit movement, you may find a powered toothbrush easier to use.

Choose products with the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. The ADA Seal on a product is your assurance that it has met ADA standards for safety and effectiveness. Your dental team can point you to products for your specific needs.

What are some good tips for brushing teeth properly?

There is more than one way to brush your teeth, so it’s a good idea to ask your dentist which one to use. Here are a few tips to help when you start a good routine: