Best Oral Practices You Need to Start Doing Now

When people tell you that you have nice teeth, defiantly do not start taking your teeth for granted. Achieving healthy teeth means you will be taking care of your teeth for the rest of your life. It is essential to take care of your teeth on a regular daily basis. Here are some tips that will help you take care of your teeth the proper way:


Don’t go to bed without brushing your teeth.

The recommended times of brushing your teeth is at least twice a day. However, many of us continue to neglect brushing our teeth at night – before going to bed. Brushing our teeth at this time gets rid of the germs and plaque that have accumulated all throughout the day and will literally sit in our mouth hard at work while you sleep!


Brush and floss properly.

The way you brush and floss your teeth plays an important role in maintaining good oral health practices. In fact, brushing your teeth poorly is almost as bad as not brushing at all. When you are brushing your teeth, make sure you take time to move your toothbrush in gentle, circular motions – this removes the plaque. Remember that failure to remove plaque can lead to its hardening and build-up. When it builds up, it might lead to gingivitis. Flossing is best done before brushing your teeth. Flossing is not just getting rid of food that gets stuck in between the teeth. It’s also a way to stimulate the gums, help lower inflammation in the area, and reduce plaque.  Learning, practicing, regular and routine brushing and flossing techniques for life will aid in all sorts of dental concerns.


Don’t forget to take care of your tongue and cheeks.

Plaque does not just build up on the teeth; it also does on the tongue and even your cheeks. This does not just lead to bad breath, but it might also lead to other oral health problems. Make it a habit that after brushing your teeth, you gently brush your tongue and cheeks (inside your mouth), too. Make sure that you do not leave any toothpaste residue in your mouth. If you find this uncomfortable, you can use a ‘tongue scraper’ to avoid from gagging when you clean your tongue.


Use fluoride-filled toothpaste.

When it comes to choosing which toothpaste to use, make sure that it contains fluoride. Fluoride is a leading defense against tooth decay. It fights off germs that can lead to tooth decay, and it also provides a protective barrier for your teeth.


Hydrate throughout the day.

Water is still the best beverage for our overall health – this includes your oral health. It is recommended to drink water after each meal as this helps wash out some of the negative effects of acidic and sticky foods and beverages in between brushing and flossing.


Limit sugary and acidic foods and beverages.

Sugar converts into acid in the mouth, and this causes erosion of teeth enamel. These acids are what actually lead to cavities. Acidic fruits, coffee and tea can also wear down tooth enamel. You don’t have to avoid all these foods and drinks, but you just have to take the necessary precautions needed to lessen their damaging effects on the teeth.

The Importance of Brushing and Flossing

Ever since we were young, we have always taught how important brushing and flossing our teeth are. Despite the many reminders, we still, at times, forget to maintain a proper healthy oral routine. Here are a few reminders on the importance of these two acts:

Brushing Our Teeth
Plaque is a colourless film of bacteria that coats your teeth if you do not brush them properly and on a regular basis. Plaque contributes to tooth decay and gum diseases. Brushing the teeth stops plaque from building up. When you brush your teeth, you are also helping your mouth smell fresh and clean. It is never enough to just chew gum and it definitely does not kill any bacteria. People who do not brush their teeth on a regular basis are more prone to having tooth loss and other dental problems.

Proper Way of Brushing the Teeth
When brushing the teeth, make sure that you brush all the surfaces of your teeth – in total, it should take you no less than about two minutes. It is a must to brush the inner and outer tooth surfaces, as well as the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Children should be supervised when brushing their teeth until they are at least seven years old. It is important to spit out any excess toothpaste after brushing. Using a mouthwash that contains fluoride can be an aid in preventing tooth decay, but do not use it immediately after brushing your teeth. Doing so, washes away the concentrated fluoride in the toothpaste left on your teeth.

Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is an act that is often neglected but is a vital part in maintaining proper dental health. By flossing daily, you can remove plaque that is stuck between your teeth. This is an area that cannot be reached by your toothbrush. Unless the plaque is removed from this area, it can contribute to the build-up of tartar, cavities and other dental concerns. Flossing is also one of the things that most people do not enjoy doing. It’s something that is so easy to do, yet equally easy to neglect and put-off. Just like toothbrushes, dental flosses come in different sizes, types and flavours and worth finding one that each family member likes.

Proper Way of Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is not just for dislodging the food wedged between your teeth and plaque. It helps in reducing bad breath and gum diseases by removing plaque that forms along and under the gum line. The best time to floss is before brushing the teeth. Take 12-18 inches (30-45cm) of floss and grasp it so you have a couple of inches between your hands. Slip the floss between the teeth and into the areas between your teeth and gums – as far as it will go without forcing it. Floss with 8-10 strokes, up and down between each tooth, to dislodge plaque and food.

Maintain a healthy oral routine now in order to avoid more complex dental conditions and issues in the future!

Summer Fun: Keep Your Teeth Safe

Summertime is the perfect time to be with your family and friends, and have fun under the sun! Since you will probably be thinking about all the good things you will be doing, you might neglect your teeth – but you shouldn’t. Here are some tips on how you can keep your teeth safe and shiny this summer:

Rinse your mouth after swimming
The acidity of the water in swimming pools can affect your tooth enamel. In order to prevent this from happening, rinse with clean water throughout the day as well as after swimming. Brushing your teeth within an hour of pool time should be avoided as the enamel might still be vulnerable. 

Drink enough water
Dry mouth contributes to cavities so it is important that you drink enough water to stay hydrated throughout the whole day. This is not just for your teeth, but for your overall health as well. (so-so)

Use straws when drinking fresh coolers
Drinking lemonades, sodas, and other sweet and acidic drinks can be bad for your teeth. Help your teeth by drinking through straws – this limits the impact of the acids on your teeth. You should also rinse with water after drinking sugary or acidic drinks as this helps, too. 

Brush your teeth after eating sweets
Hard candies soak your teeth in sugar for a long time while sticky candies, on the other hand, get stuck on your teeth. In order to protect your teeth and gums from too much sugar, you should brush and floss after these types of treats. If that’s not possible, you can just rinse with water or you can also chew sugarless gum, instead. 

Use proper protective equipment
When you are playing contact sports, make sure you use mouth guards accordingly. It doesn’t just protect your teeth, but it also helps prevent concussions. There are different types of mouth guards that are appropriate for different kinds of sports. To make sure that you are using the right one, it is best to consult Dr. Lean and his Team. 

We encourage you to take special care of your teeth during the summer. Brushing and flossing your teeth daily are important especially when you’re on vacation. Summer can also be the best time to catch up on your missed dental appointments. Here at Pickering Square Dental, we make sure that we prioritize all our patients’ teeth. We provide the best dental services we can give for our valued patients. Call us today!

Holiday Foods to Watch Out For

Now that the holiday season is upon us that means it’s time for food, family, food, presents, holiday parties, and food.  There’s a lot of food around is what we’re saying.  Tons of different varieties, holiday treats you don’t see the rest of the year, family recipes and specialties, and a whole lot of ways to incorporate sugar just make everything so tempting.  You should be wary however, for as delicious as all of these dishes can be they can be hard on your teeth, and some are just best avoided.

The Sticky

Food items that get into the crevices and stay there are some of the worst ones for your teeth since they can turn into sugars that feed damaging bacteria.  Popcorn is a major offender during this season as kernels can get stuck between teeth and under the gum line which can cause problems.  Other sticky foods like stuffing and dried fruit are problematic for the same reason – the longer they stick in your teeth the more damage they can do.

The Sweet

There are plenty of sweets to go around during the holidays.  Egg nog is full of sugar and fat and can layer itself on to your teeth.  Candy, especially candy canes are almost pure sugar so they’re dangerous as are most other forms of seasonal snacks like sugar cookies, yule logs, and the various cakes and pies that get adorned with the symbols of holiday cheer.  It’s a sugar overload and your teeth are best served by avoiding them altogether.

Preventing Damage

Let’s be honest, you’re not going to avoid all of them.  People serve holiday foods because they’re yummy and simply all part of the celebrations of the Season, you’re going to want to indulge your taste buds.  That’s perfectly fine but if you know what the worst foods are you can know how to combat any issues that may arise.  Bring a toothbrush and floss with you to holiday dinners and you’ll be able to get any sticky stuff off.  Even drinking water between snack sessions will help clear your mouth of sugary debris.  Take the right precautions and you can enjoy the deliciousness the season can offer without ending up with dental problems.

Enjoy your holiday season but make sure to be smart about what you eat and how you clean your teeth.  If you’re looking to get your teeth cleaned to make your pearly whites really dazzle this holiday season or want to get something else checked, we provide full service family dentistry.  Contact Pickering Square Dental today.

Winterizing Your Sensitive Teeth

Winter is hard on everything – your car, your home, and your willingness to be outside – and it can also be hard on your teeth.  Sensitive teeth really act up when the air is chilly making food or drink that is hot or cold very uncomfortable to ingest.  It can be caused by a number of factors, though in most minor cases it’s worn enamel, or gum recession and there are ways to mitigate the sensitivity and save yourself some discomfort.

Change Up Your Brushing

One of the best first steps in combating teeth sensitivity is switching to a toothpaste that’s made for sensitive teeth.  When tooth enamel becomes eroded it exposes a more vulnerable layer underneath that these special toothpastes can desensitize.  If you use a hard or medium toothbrush you’ll want to switch to soft since just by trying to get your teeth clean you could be wearing down the enamel yourself.  A softer toothbrush will also help with minimizing gum recession as well.

Strengthen Your Enamel

There are other ways to strengthen enamel.  Avoiding sugary or acidic food and drinks is a great place to start as is eating leafy vegetables, dairy, and protein.  Mouthwash can also help as can chewing sugar free gum containing xylitol.  If necessary you can add a remineralizing gel to your hygiene regimen which can rebuild tooth enamel effectively.

Professional Measures

If eroded enamel is not the issue you will likely need to see a professional as other factors that may cause sensitive teeth are tooth decay, irritated gums, or an exposed root.  Action may need to be taken to attack the underlying problem before it escalates into something worse than simple issues with sensitivity.  If you suspect your sensitivity is caused by one of these other factors or is accompanied by pain, call Pickering Square Dental right away.

Sensitive teeth is one of those issues that are not usually harmful but can cause issues with quality of life so it’s best to have it take care of, preferably before the winter is over.  If you or your family are looking for great dentistry contact us at Pickering Square Dental today.

How to Prevent Receding Gums

It can, and usually does, happen without you even knowing it.  You smile a big smile in the mirror and you notice something – your teeth seem ever so slightly taller or longer than they used to be.  You have receding gums.  Receding gums is a condition in which the gum tissue around the teeth pulls back or is worn away, exposing more of the teeth and their roots.  It can be serious problem especially with heavy recession as the gaps that can form between the teeth can allow bacteria to build up and can even result in severe damage to teeth and the surrounding bone if left untreated.  In order to understand what you’re dealing with there are some things you should know about receding gums.


Gum disease is the largest cause of receding gums – the bacteria destroys tissue around the teeth and attacks the supporting bone structure as well.  Hard or incorrect tooth brushing can cause the enamel on your teeth to wear away and your gums to recede.  Inadequate brushing can also make it easy for tartar to build up which itself can lead to issues with receding gums.  Additional contributing factors include hormonal changes, heredity, smoking, and grinding your teeth.


If receding gums become enough of an issue that treatment becomes necessary mild or moderate recession can be treated by deep cleaning and potentially antibiotics.  If the recession has progressed into becoming severe it may require dental (periodontal) surgery to treat.


Preventing gum recession can be as easy as taking good care in maintaining dental hygiene.  Brush and floss every day and see your dentist at least twice a year.  Always use a soft bristled toothbrush and follow the correct instructions on how to use it.  If receding is caused by grinding or crooked teeth you should get the issue corrected by your dentist as soon as possible.  Make sure to keep an eye on your gums if you sense a problem and see your dentist if you’re worried.

Taking care of your gums isn’t too difficult but if you are noticing an additional sensitivity or you’re worried about your dental care in general contact us at Pickering Square Dental today.