Earlier this week, we talked about flossing and how important it is in your daily routine in order to maintain optimal oral and physical health. Today, we’re going to expand on that and go over proper brushing and flossing techniques to ensure that it is being done correctly and effectively.


Let’s start with flossing, since that should come first.


  1. Start by taking a piece of floss that is equal to the length of your forearm. Some flosses come pre-cut which is useful.
  2. Wrap the floss around your index and middle fingers, leaving around two inches of space to use on your teeth.
  3. Wiggle the floss between your teeth, wrapping it into a “C” shape around the bottom of a tooth and gently under the base on the gumline. Repeat this 2-3 times per tooth, making sure not to forget the back of your teeth as well. Move down the line of floss as it begins to weaken or fray.


After flossing, brush your teeth to remove the particles that you have uprooted from between them. Preferably, you should brush after every meal, but as long as you’re doing it at least once a day before bed, you should be safe. Like flossing, there is a proper way to brush your teeth to ensure maximum efficacy.


  1. Start by angling your brush at a 45 degree angle, focusing on the area where the teeth and gums meet.

  2. Use a gentle, circular motion, moving your brush up and down the surface of the tooth. Be careful and don’t scrub, as it damages the gums and results in premature gum recession.

  3. DO NOT RUSH. Brushing your teeth should take at least 2-3 minutes for a thorough cleaning. Try timing yourself, or play your current favorite song and brush until it is over.

  4. Finish by swishing a mouthwash around your mouth to remove any remaining bacteria and food particles. DO NOT SWALLOW.


Other helpful tips:


  1. Flossing can be a hard routine to get into, especially since it is a time-consuming repetitive task. We recommend flossing while you watch TV at night.

  2. Your gums will bleed when you first start flossing as they’re not used to it. The bleeding should stop after 2-3 days of continuous flossing.

  3. Those with braces may have a harder time with these tasks. Specialized toothbrushes and flossing methods are available for you, providing by your dentist.

  4. Choose a toothbrush with soft, rounded bristles, and replace it every 3 months.


This is a general guide and results will vary with each individual. For more information, contact your family dentist for all questions and concerns.

If the last time you flossed was when your dentist did it during your bi-annual cleaning, you may want to think about making it an early New Year’s Resolution and driving to your nearest pharmacy for a pack.


Even if you brush your teeth the recommended three times a day, it is still not enough. In fact, flossing is considered to be even more important than standard brushing alone as it removes bacteria from between the teeth that a toothbrush cannot reach. If that bacteria is left to develop, it becomes plaque which is the predecessor of tartar, which then eventually leads to tooth decay and even tooth loss.


If tooth decay and tooth loss wasn’t enough to convince you to floss, take a look at these other health problems that can develop from a lack of proper oral hygiene:

  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Gingivitis (Inflammation of the dums)
  • Periodontal Disease
  • Gum disease
  • Cavities
  • Heart problems
  • Increased risk of dementia
  • Increased risk of head and neck cancers

The last few are extreme cases, but still shown to be linked to poor oral hygiene. Despite these facts, it is estimated that at least one-third of Americans do not floss, and even more do not have a consistent brushing routine.


It is never too late to start, though. Later this week, we will go over proper flossing and brushing techniques so you can be on your way to a happy, healthier mouth.


If you have questions until then, Dr. Sam Saddat and his team are more than happy to answer any that you may have. Get in touch with them by clicking on ‘CONTACT’ on the homepage.

So, you’ve gotten into an accident and now you’re missing a few teeth, or maybe age has caught up with you and some of your teeth just aren’t quite what they used to be. Luckily, you have some options when it comes to restoring your smile. Let’s take a brief look at a couple of procedures: implants and bridges.


Let’s start with implants.


What is an Implant?


A dental implant is an artificial tooth root made typically out of titanium that is inserted into the jawbone where the real tooth was previously located. Over a lengthy process of about six months, the artificial root fuses with the surrounding tissue to create a solid foundation for the temporary crown that is placed on top. After that, the gums continue to form and morph themselves around the structure, finalizing in a way that looks completely natural. Once this process is complete, a permanent crown will take the place of the temporary one.


What is a Bridge?


A dental bridge is exactly what it sounds like. Unlike implants which replace the whole tooth root, a bridge ‘bridges’ the space between teeth, connecting to the adjacent teeth. The surrounding teeth provide support for the new crown that is placed. In order to do that, however, the supporting teeth may have to be permanently altered and filed down to achieve optimum results.


Am I a Candidate?


Well, that depends. A consultation with your dentist will confirm which is best, but there are a number of factors standing in the way of your candidacy for each procedure.


For implants, the candidate must have fully matured, meaning that there will be no more developmental bone growth for them to go through. X-Rays and CT Scans will determine whether or not there is enough bone structure in order for an implant to be inserted. Bone density and quality are both major contributing factors to being accepted for this procedure. Patients who smoke will need to quit in order to be considered as smoking results in a higher rate of implant failure. Those who also suffer from cancer, periodontal disease, or diabetes may need to go through extra steps before they qualify as candidates.


In terms of candidacy, dental bridges are a little more lenient because of their less invasive nature. However, those who are missing multiple teeth will not be able to have this done as dental bridges rely on the surrounding teeth for support. Teeth which have chips, cracks, are in a state of decay, or are not stable will have to go through additional steps and treatments before a dental bridge can be considered.


Cost Considerations


Especially with elective cosmetic procedures which are not covered under insurance, the cost of treatments can greatly sway a patient’s opinion on which treatment to opt in for.


Implants are the more costly of the two, ranging in price from $900 to $3,000 per implant, while bridges are far less expensive, ranging from $700 to $1,500. These costs only cover the implant itself, and do not include any additional appointments that may be required either before or after the treatment itself. Your dentist will be able to provide you with a more clear and concise breakdown of costs during a consultation.


In the case of implants and bridges, it is important to consider the long-term benefits. Yes, bridges do cost less, are much less invasive, and the procedure is far shorter, but the main reason that patients choose implants is durability. Dental bridges, if cared for properly, can have a lifespan of 10 to 20 years before they need to be replaced, whereas implants will typically last well over 40 years. It is important to evaluate your unique circumstances and weigh your options carefully as replacing bridges throughout your lifetime could go well over the cost of an implant.


Speak with your dentist about your options, find out if they offer a payment plan, and ask questions for a complete and thorough evaluation.

It’s a fact of life that perfect teeth do not come to the majority of us naturally. In fact, there’s an estimated 75% chance that a child between the ages of 10-13 will need some sort of orthodontic intervention in their life. But braces are not just for children anymore. Adult braces are on the rise as well for those who never had the opportunity as a child, or for the small percentage who neglected to properly wear their post-braces retainer and their teeth shifted back to their previous state. No matter which category you fall under, there is help out there, and with the rise and advancement of technology, you now have a choice: traditional braces or Invisalign? By the end of this article, you will hopefully have a clear, informed decision on which to choose.


Let’s start with traditional braces. These are metal brackets that sit on the surface of the tooth and are connected by a wire, but have come a long way from being the famous “metal-mouth” braces of the past. The ones nowadays have smaller brackets which are less noticeable, and have the option of having an “archwire”–a wire that is heat activated by your body’s natural heat to make the process of moving your teeth not only faster, but less painful as well.


Pros of Traditional Metal Braces:

  • Less treatment time
  • Able to correct severe cases
  • For the kids and fun-loving adults: interchangeable, colourful elastic bands
  • No risk of losing them
  • Inexpensive
  • Suitable for all ages


Cons of Traditional Metal Braces:

  • Very noticeable for those concerned with this
  • Time consuming to clean around
  • Food restrictions: gum, popcorn, caramel candies, anything that is really sticky or hard is not recommended as they can damage the braces
  • Have the potential to irritate or cut the inside of your lips and cheeks


There is a non-metal version in the traditional brace family where they use ceramic instead of metal. Ceramic braces are identical to the metal ones in terms of shape and their function, but the brackets and wires are clear or tooth coloured for a more subtle appearance. However, they come with their own pros and cons.


Pros of Ceramic Braces:

  • Less noticeable
  • Lessen the potential to cut the inside of the lips and cheeks
  • Less treatment time (the same as traditional metal)
  • No risk of losing them


Cons of Ceramic Braces:

  • Unable to be used for very severe cases
  • More expensive than the metal variety
  • Difficult to maintain–high chance of staining so frequent brushing is a MUST
  • Not recommended for children or young teenagers


The third and final option in the traditional brace family are lingual braces, also known as incognito or hidden braces. While traditional braces are placed on the outside of the teeth, lingual braces are fitted behind the teeth for a completely hidden appearance. As with everything, they come with their own unique benefits and challenges.


Pros of Lingual Braces:

  • Completely unnoticeable
  • Suitable for all ages and most patients
  • Less treatment time (same as metal and ceramic)
  • No risk of losing them


Cons of Lingual Braces:

  • Tongue irritation from constant contact
  • Possible speech impediment (only lasts about 2-3 weeks)
  • Hygiene and cleanliness issues (it’s much harder to see trapped food)
  • Costly


Not a huge fan of having something metal constantly in your mouth and limiting your food choices? Luckily, there is a removable and cost-effective option called Invisalign. Becoming one of the most popular choices for tooth correction nowadays, Invisalign is more accessible than ever. To see if it is right for you, here are some of the pros and cons that come with this treatment:


Pros of Invisalign:

  • Completely unnoticeable
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Able to remove during meals
  • Affordable*
  • Easy to clean and maintain


Cons of Invisalign:

  • Expensive*
  • Inconvenient for busy adults/teens
  • 22 hour/day requirement
  • Tooth discomfort after each new set


*Affordability varies as the cost for Invisalign is on a case to case basis. The more severe a correction needs to be, the more costly they will be as it is not covered by dental insurance. However with Invisalign becoming more and more popular, Newbury Smiles has frequent promotions to make it more accessible to all clients. A quick consultation will help map out the exact costs and what to expect.


Hopefully this guide has given you a better insight into the world of tooth alignment correction. Please note that not all benefits and cons are listed here and you may have a different experience than others as what works for one person may not work for you. Your dentist will be able to determine which is best for you based on a number of factors, and can answer any questions you may have.


To set up a free consultation, please contact Dr. Sam Saddat and his team at +1 805-499-3691