Brushing your teeth at least twice daily helps prevent tooth
decay and gum disease, the major causes of tooth loss. Use a soft-bristle brush and an
ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste to remove plaque and food particles. You should replace your brush when it begins to show wear or every three months,
whichever comes first. Some researchers have discovered that toothbrushes can be a source
of reinfection after you've had a cold so replace your brush after you have one.
Flossing daily removes plaque and food particles between teeth and below the gumline.
You may experience sore or bleeding gums for the first several days you
floss. If bleeding continues after the first week of flossing, call your dentist. If you
are having trouble handling floss, you can ask about the use of a floss holder or other
types of interdental cleaning aids.