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Taking Care of Your Teeth: Adults and Seniors | Print |

Over the past 50 years, there has been great progress and improvement in the nation's oral health. Most middle-aged and younger Americans expect to keep their natural teeth over their lifetime. What can you do to maintain good oral health?

  • Daily oral care is important. Brush your teeth and gums with a soft bristle toothbrush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. Use dental floss daily to clean between your teeth
  • Regularly drink fluoridated water
  • Eat a balanced diet and limit between meal snacks. Avoid sugars and starches when snacking and limit the number of snacks eaten throughout the day
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months
  • Visit your dentist regularly. Regular professional care is important even if you do not have natural teeth. An exam of the mouth can provide early detection of pre-cancerous or cancerous lesions
  • Taking good care of dentures is essential for good oral health. Keep your dentures clean and well fit. Dentures that do not fit well can cause irritations on the inside of the cheeks, gums or tongue. It is recommended that you remove your dentures while sleeping
  • Avoid tobacco
  • Limit alcohol
  • Talk to your doctor and dentist if medications you take give you a dry mouth
  • Many elders are not able to perform effective daily oral hygiene. Caretakers should ensure that daily oral care is incorporated in daily general care.

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