Dr. Lebedoff

5314 S. Yale Ave. Suite 1100
Tulsa, OK 74135

Dental Cleanings

Your dental health hinges on two important routines. The first is the appointment you should make for yourself every 6 months for a professional dental cleaning. The second is your at-home daily oral hygiene regimen.

A Preventive Dental Cleaning (Prophylaxis) is a professional cleaning and polishing of your teeth, accompanied by an examination that looks for any issues that could be arising. The benefits of semi-annual cleaning include:

Preventive Dental Cleanings are performed in our Tulsa office. For basic prevention, dental cleanings should be scheduled every 6 months; patients with gum (periodontal) disease sufferers should schedule more thorough dental cleanings every 3-4 months to help slow the progression of gum disease.

Oral Hygiene is a daily process. It should be consistent and follow the example demonstrated for you at your in-office visit. Our team is always ready and willing to show you the proper procedure for brushing and flossing! Benefits of proper at-home oral care include reduced risk of tooth loss, cavities, and gum disease.

Brushing

Dental Cleanings

Regular professional cleanings help you stay ahead of developing dental problems.

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Dr. Lebedoff recommends you use a soft to medium toothbrush to brush with several times per day. You should position the brush at a 45 degree angle, and start where your gums and teeth meet on the lower arch. Gently move the brush in a circular motion several times using small, gentle strokes to brush the outside surfaces of your teeth.

Use light pressure while putting the bristles between the teeth, but not so much pressure that you feel any discomfort. Move up from the gums to the ends of your teeth to ensure every portion of the outward facing surface is covered. Repeat the process on the upper teeth, working down from the gum-line.

Duplicate this method to scrub the inside faces each back tooth, using the same slant and circular motion. For the insides of the upper and lower front teeth, hold the brush vertically, making several back and forth motions and remembering to gently brush the gums as well.

For the chewing surfaces of your teeth, use short, gentle strokes and change the angle and direction of the brush often to ensure all surfaces are thoroughly cleaned. Swish with clear water when done to wash out any food or plaque particles.

Flossing

In most cases, decay first appears between the teeth where your toothbrush cannot reach. By using the following flossing technique you can reduce bacteria and plaque between teeth and help prevent dental decay and gum disease.

Select a length of floss that is approximately 18" long. Lightly wrap most of the floss around the middle finger of one hand, then wrap the rest of the floss around the middle finger of the other hand.

Start with the upper teeth. Hold the floss tightly between the thumb and forefinger of each hand, and insert the floss between the teeth with care. A sawing motion can be used to edge the floss down to the gum-line (don't force or snap the floss down — it could cut your gum.)

Once the floss is at the gum-line, curve it into a C-shape against one tooth. Slide it gently into the space between the gum and the tooth until you feel a light resistance, then stop. Move the floss carefully up and down, then repeat on the side of the adjacent tooth. Don't forget the back sides of the hindmost teeth, and rinse well after you floss.

If you haven't flossed in a while, your gums may feel tender and bleed a little during flossing. This should stop after a week or so of daily oral care. Make sure that you aren't cutting into your gums with the floss or sawing against the gums.

Sensitive Teeth

After dental treatment, your teeth may be temporarily sensitive to hot and cold. Attend to your oral hygiene diligently, and this should pass within a few days. If your teeth remain sensitive, ask Dr. Lebedoff or your hygienist about special toothpaste or mouth rinse products that can decrease sensitivity.

Oral Care Products

Electric toothbrushes such as Rotadent and Interplak are an excellent choice as long as you ensure you are reaching all tooth surfaces. Irrigators are perfect for rinsing your mouth and stimulating your gums, but are not a stand-alone oral care solution — you should still brush and floss daily.

For children over six years of age and adults, fluoridated toothpastes or mouth rinses can reduce the chance of tooth decay by as much as 40%. Tartar control toothpastes can indeed reduce tartar above the gum-line, but have no effect below the gum-line where periodontal disease starts. Anti-plaque rinses can help bring early gum disease under control when used in conjunction with a brushing and flossing regimen.

If you have any pain while brushing or have any questions about how to brush properly, please be sure to call the office at (918) 492-3003.

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