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October is here and so is the bounty of sweet Halloween treats around every corner. Luckily, October also celebrates National Dental Hygiene month and National Orthodontic Health month to offer us balance as we enter the holiday season.

At Smiley Dental Forest Lane in Dallas, Texas, Dr. Raquel Wright and Dr. Leena Hoang wish our patients a spookily safe October by sharing the message of National Dental Hygiene Month. “Do The Daily 4” are the four most important parts of a preventative oral health regimen, and they include the following:

— Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes to lessen plaque and help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

— Floss between your teeth and gums once a day using dental floss or interdental brushes to remove food particles and plaque in places your toothbrush can’t reach.

–Rinse with an anti-microbial mouthwash once daily to freshen breath and help prevent gum disease. Only use mouthwash with the ADA Seal of Acceptance to ensure that the product is both safe AND effective.

— Chewing sugarless gum boosts your daily regimen by “cleaning” your teeth after eating and drinking when you can’t actually brush your teeth. Chewing stimulates saliva production to neutralize plaque acids, remineralize enamel and wash away food particles.

In addition to your daily oral hygiene routine, we are pleased to share tips for those patients aligning their smile, in honor of National Orthodontic Health Month:

— To protect braces and aligners, avoid any kind of candy or snacks which are hard, sticky, crunchy or chewy. This means caramel, bubblegum, and soft drinks. Never chew ice, and watch out for popcorn, nuts, candies with nuts inside, peanut candies in the hard-shell.

— If you are indulging in more sugary treats due to the holiday, step up your brushing and flossing. Brush carefully around all of your brackets and wires, focusing on places where your teeth meet your gums and where your braces attach to your teeth.

— To protect your braces, stick with soft chocolates, peppermint patties, peanut butter cups and other treats that melt in your mouth and can easily be washed away.

— For those wearing braces and engaging in sports, wear mouthguards to protect your lips and your cheeks from cuts, damaged braces, or an orthodontic appliance if you accidentally get hit in the face or fall down.

Enjoy the October festivities mindfully, and your smile will thank you. If you have any questions or want to schedule a visit with our dentists, please call Smiley Dental Forest Lane in Dallas, Texas at 972.484.5400. Dr. Raquel Wright and Dr. Leena Hoang wish you and your family a spookily healthy Halloween!