Preventive Dentistry

How often should I replace my toothbrush?

Your toothbrush should be replaced every three months, or sooner if it starts to look frayed or worn. If your toothbrush looks frayed quickly, you are probably using too much pressure to brush.

Your toothbrush has a tough job, and using it correctly will help you get the most out of it. When you brush your teeth, do not use heavy pressure. The tips of your bristles do the cleaning. Angle the bristles toward your gum line and use gentle back and forth motions to remove any food particles from your gums. Spend 30 seconds per quadrant making sure to reach all areas and chewing surfaces of your teeth.

Brushing at least twice daily and flossing once daily, in addition to your regular dental cleanings, will help you keep your teeth and gums healthy.

If you use an electric toothbrush such as Oral-B or Sonicare, they each come with recommendations for replacing the specialty heads, usually every three to six months.

Ultimately, your own judgment is best. Your toothbrush should be in good shape to ensure it is doing its job. Anytime it looks worn, throw a new one in your shopping basket. Also, since the bacteria that cause decay and gum disease can be transferred from person to person, it is a good idea to avoid sharing your toothbrush.

How often do I need to go to the dentist?

The frequency of your dental appointments depends largely upon your oral health and the amount of dentistry you have. For some patients, twice-yearly visits are enough to keep you on track with your oral health and for other patients, more frequent dental cleanings can help keep periodontal disease under control and prevent tooth loss.

Certain conditions such as pregnancy, hormonal changes, diabetes, taking certain medications, and having dry mouth may also require you to have more than two dental cleanings per year. With the proper care and recovery, you can often return to your regular schedule later.

Patients undergoing cancer treatment require specialized care. We will work closely with your doctor to ensure that you have the treatment you need to stay healthy. We will also provide valuable information about oral care while undergoing cancer treatment.

The best way to find out what will work for you is to schedule an appointment with Dr. David Stern for a comprehensive oral evaluation. After a complete exam, he will create your individual preventive care plan. No two patients are alike. When we create an oral health care plan, we do it with your unique needs in mind.

Come in and see us. We will be happy to answer your questions and address any concerns you may have.