Oral Health Education Tips

Idaho Falls Dentist, Machen Family Dentistry

Simple & Easy Steps for a Clean, Healthy Mouth

1. You should brush your teeth thoroughly at least twice a day to remove plaque and to prevent tooth decay. Follow the steps below for proper brushing. Contact your doctor if you have any questions.

2. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles. They are kinder to your teeth and gums. They also make it easier to remove plaque from below the gum line, where gum disease starts.

3. Use a pea sized amount of toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride strengthens the outer enamel layer of the teeth. It can stop a cavity in its tracks and give you more resistance to future cavities.

4. Make sure your brushing routine lasts long enough to thoroughly remove plaque. We recommend that you brush for at least 2 minutes.


Dr. Machen is very educated on amount of fluoride to use. Every person is treated as an individual. This means that Dr. takes into consideration where the person lives and how much natural fluoride the person is ingesting along with their age and weight. See

www.deq.idaho.gov › Water Quality › Drinking Water

Fluoride therapy is the delivery of fluoride to the teeth, topically or systemically, to protect them from dental caries (cavities). Strictly speaking, fluoride therapy repairs rather than prevents damage to the teeth, causing the mineral fluorapatite to be incorporated into damaged tooth enamel. Fluorapatite is not a natural component of human teeth, although it is found in the teeth of sharks. The main mineral found in natural tooth enamel is hydroxyapatite rather than the fluorapatite created in the presence of fluoride. Even without fluoride, teeth experience alternating increases and decreases in mineral content, depending upon how acidic or basic the mouth is, and depending upon the concentration of other substances in the mouth, such as phosphate and calcium. Fluoride enhances and modifies the restoration of the mineral content of the teeth, and counteracts the breakdown of the teeth from lactic acid producing bacteria. The purpose of tooth-brushing is twofold: to mechanically remove plaque, and also to apply fluoride to the tooth surface, promoting re-mineralization with fluorapatite.

In topical fluoride therapies, fluoride is applied directly to the surface of the teeth, most commonly by means of a fluoride toothpaste. Other topical fluoride therapies include fluoridated mouth rinses, lozenges, gels, foams, and varnishes.

In systemic fluoride therapies, fluoride is swallowed as an additive to drinking water, salt, or milk, or as an ingredient in tablets, lozenges, or drops. Where public water supplies are fluoridated, other systemic fluoride therapies are not recommended.