Oral Hygiene Instructions

Oral hygiene instructions (OHI) are health education that dentists give their patients to help them improve their oral hygiene practices and plaque control. This information is very important because it helps to reduce the harmful bacteria that cause gum disease.


Hygiene instruction should include twice a day brushing with a moderate bass technique and daily flossing with or without tape, interdental brushes and mouthwashes. It also includes eating a healthy diet.


Flossing is an important part of your dental hygiene routine that removes plaque and food debris from areas of the mouth your toothbrush cannot reach. It is also a great way to keep your gums healthy by stimulating and cleaning them. It is best to floss once a day to keep your teeth and gums clean.

When you are flossing, be sure to gently move the floss between each tooth, avoiding snapping it into place. This can cause pain and damage the tissue. If you have trouble maneuvering the floss between your teeth, try using a dental pick or a small brush that looks like a mascara wand to help you.

You can buy standard floss that is made of nylon and comes in a variety of flavors. You can also purchase dental tape, which is a flat strip of floss that is broader and works well for spaces between teeth, as well as specialty floss for braces, bridges or wide gaps, and spongy floss that is great for people with sensitive gums.

Regardless of what type of floss you use, it is important to floss on a daily basis. Research suggests that flossing can decrease your risk of gum disease and tooth decay, even if you have a regular brushing routine. It is also believed that flossing can lower your blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Interdental Cleanings

The areas between teeth, referred to as interproximal surfaces, are the sites of most plaque accumulation. Toothbrushing alone cannot effectively remove food debris and biofilm from these spaces, which sets the stage for tooth decay and gum disease. Interdental cleanings (with or without the use of irrigation devices) can effectively reduce biofilm in these hard-to-reach areas when used properly.

Flossing is the most common method of interdental cleaning, but patients can be reluctant to add flossing to their oral hygiene routine. The habit can feel awkward or uncomfortable, particularly for patients with tight spaces between teeth. Moreover, the results of flossing may not be immediately evident, making it less likely that patients will prioritize this activity in their daily routines.

Dental professionals can help motivate patients to incorporate interdental cleanings into their routines by showing them the benefits of doing so. For example, by using a plaque disclosing tablet after brushing, dentists can demonstrate to patients how much of their dental biofilm remains between their teeth. Then, they can demonstrate how effective the use of interdental brushes or a rubber interdental cleaner, such as GUM SOFT-PICKS ADVANCED, could be in removing this buildup from between their teeth. Ease of use is also a key driver in ensuring patient compliance with this important oral hygiene practice. This is especially true for patients with limited dexterity, such as children or the elderly.

Regular Dental Checkups

Visiting the dentist isn’t always at the top of everyone’s list of fun things to do, but it is a very important part of maintaining your oral health and overall well-being. Regular dental checkups allow your dentist to find and treat oral health problems such as cavities and gum disease before they advance, saving you time, pain and money.

Even the most fastidious brushers can miss spots in their mouth, and these hidden areas provide perfect hiding places for plaque bacteria to grow into tartar. A professional cleaning, which is included in regular dental visits, removes these hardened deposits and helps to prevent tooth decay, bad breath, gum disease and other oral health issues.

Additionally, a dental checkup can reveal destructive habits such as grinding your teeth or excessive swallowing of fluids. Informed lifestyle choices, like avoiding sugary and acidic foods or drinking less water, can help prevent these destructive habits from damaging your mouth.

Another benefit of regularly scheduled dental checkups is that your dentist can screen for other oral and systemic health issues, including gum disease, TMJ disorders, or oral cancer. Gum disease is associated with inflammation in the body, and it has been linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes. In addition, the head and neck exam that is part of a routine dental visit can also identify swollen lymph nodes, which could be a warning sign for cancer or other serious conditions.