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Americans Need to Brush Up on Dental Knowledge

Americans Need to Brush Up on Dental Knowledge

As a dentist, part of my role is to help people take good care of their dental health. As it turns out, I have my work cut out for me. The American Dental Association recently surveyed people to find out what they know about dental health, and Americans need to brush up on their knowledge. For example, most people surveyed didn’t know that you should floss your teeth every day. Or that you should get a new toothbrush every three months. Or that some bleeding after brushing your teeth is not normal -- actually, it can be a sign of gum disease.

Help keep your mouth healthy by doing these 4 things:

  1. Brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste -- two minutes for each brushing should do it.
  2. Floss once a day to help remove food particles and cavity-causing germs from between your teeth.
  3. Eat a balanced diet.
  4. See your dentist regularly.

If you have specific questions about your oral health, be sure to search for the answers on Sharecare. And I’m delighted that the American Dental Association has launched MouthHealthy.org, a new comprehensive source of credible oral health information, organized by life stages. Whether you’re taking care of young children, elderly parents or yourself, MouthHealthy.org will help you stay mouth healthy for life. There’s also a dental IQ quiz where you can test your own knowledge about taking care of your mouth. And if you have children or grandchildren, be sure to check out the kids section where children can learn to take care of their teeth by watching videos of Sesame Street characters including Elmo!

Medically reviewed in July 2019.

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