Yes! Brushing does not remove the bacteria and food particles that are lodged in between your teeth.  Flossing is the one sure way to remove the bacterial plaque that accumulates between your teeth. If you don’t floss, the bacteria will likely cause decay.

Most dentists agree that a person should brush their teeth 2-3 minutes at every brushing, and they should brush at least twice a day. On strategy is to start brushing at one quadrant of your mouth and move across the mouth to all quadrants until all teeth are brushed.  This way, you won’t miss any teeth by accident.  Some electric toothbrushes have a built in timer which will turn off the tooth brush after 2 minutes.

The use of mouthwash is fine: it gives you a fresh feeling in your mouth.  Try to purchase alcohol-free mouthwash because alcohol can dry the inner lining of the mouth. This may decrease the mouth’s natural defenses which in turn, allow bacteria to grow.

The brand of toothpaste does not matter very much as long as it contains fluoride.  Most commercially available toothpaste do a fine job so you may choose whichever brand you prefer as long as it contains fluoride.

Not everyone can brush their teeth after each meal, but it’s still wise to do what you can to decrease acid production (from bacteria) in your mouth.  You can rinse your mouth with water after each meal or snack to remove food particles and bacteria.  You can also chew sugarless gum or gum with Xylotol.  Chewing gum increase saliva which will neutralize acid and help wash down any residual food particles.  Remember, it should be sugarless gum.


Results vary from person to person: whitening toothpastes may remove some surface stains but they do not change the color of the teeth themselves.


As with most over-the-counter products, whether they work or not depends on what brand you buy.  In general, some over-the-counter bleaching products work but there are some issues. First, the trays that come with the packages usually don’t fit as well as custom made trays.  This may lead to discomfort and patchy results, or in worst case scenarios, the ill-fitting trays may cause damage to your gums and teeth.  Another potential problem is that people use the bleaching products unsupervised.  So, if there are complications or problems, there is no one to turn to for advice or help.

There is no proven way to treat ulcers and they are difficult to remove.  Many ulcers are caused by trauma or a viral infection.  How you treat the ulcer depends on what caused them in the first place.  There are medicines that can facilitate healing but if you leave the ulcer alone, it will disappear by itself in about two weeks.

Bad breath is also called halitosis and it can be a result of many things.  In most cases, bad breath comes from bacteria in your mouth and/or tongue.  Sometimes, bad breath comes from your digestive system.

Most tooth decay is a result of bacteria (also called plaque) in your mouth.  The bacteria interacts with the sugar and starch that comes from the food you eat.  The breakdown of these components releases acid which weakens the enamel and eventually causes tooth decay.

There are a number of reasons why your teeth may be sensitive to cold:

  • your gums are recessed,
  • there is abrasions of your teeth,
  • you have had large metal restorations or decay, and
  • some people are just more sensitive to temperature.

Depending on why your teeth are sensitive to cold, different treatments can be prescribed. Some can be as simple as using a desensitizing toothpaste. Or you may need new fillings.

If you have bacteria in your mouth, it may cause your gums to be irritated or inflamed.  Irritated and inflamed gums can be called ‘gingivitis” and you can recognize this because your gums become red, puffy, and bleed.  If you don’t treat gingivitis, it may process to periodontal disease.