Oral Hygiene

Oral Hygiene Tips From Your Durham Family Dentist

At the office of Thomas Clifton, DDS, our team provides quality endodontics, family dentistry and general dental care to Durham, NC patients, but treatment is only part of a healthy beautiful smile. Using proper brushing and flossing techniques in a regular regimen is your best tool for fighting tooth decay and gum disease. We use the latest in dental technology to help you put your best smile forward, but good oral hygiene is the key to healthy teeth and gums.


It is important to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen by carefully flossing and brushing daily. To avoid unwanted plaque and food particles, brush your teeth after every meal and before bedtime. Once your toothbrush bristles start to wear down or fray, replace your toothbrush with a new one.

  • Using a small strip of fluoride toothpaste, a soft bristled toothbrush and a 45-degree angle, brush in small circular motions to reach under your gum line.
  • Brush chewing surfaces, front and back, followed by the same circular motion covering the same areas.
  • Brush the inside surfaces of the top and bottom teeth using an angled up-down motion.
  • Finish by brushing your tongue and the roof of your mouth and thoroughly rinsing after.


At least once a day, use dental floss to remove food particles and plaque between teeth. Using a small length of floss, wrap the ends of the floss tightly around your middle fingers and guide the floss between teeth to the gum line, cleaning each tooth side, pulling out any food particles or plaque. Move to the next clean section of floss and repeat.

Diet Control

Your teeth, gums and bones thrive with a healthy diet, which include the five food groups. This well-balanced diet will help minimize and avoid cavities and dental problems while promoting stronger teeth. Certain foods will increase the chances of these dental problems and should be avoided.

Follow a healthy diet:

  • Avoid candies, cookies, chips and crackers
  • Eat vegetables, low-fat yogurt and cheese

Dental Visits

Regular dental check-ups allow Dr. Clifton to detect early signs of decay and disease, so we recommend visiting us every six months. To keep your healthy smile, it is necessary to receive professional cleanings and regular check-ups.

During these visits, we will examine your teeth, find any existing dental problems, and propose any treatment needed. In the event of a dental emergency, call our Durham dentistry office immediately.

Contact Thomas Clifton DDS

By following a good oral hygiene regimen during your treatment, you will do your part in maintaining a healthy beautiful smile. If you are a current patient with questions or a new patient interested in treatment, please contact our Durham family dentistry office or complete our online appointment request form.

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