However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease.
Problems with your oral health also can contribute to diseases and conditions such as endocarditis, cardiovascular disease and pneumonia.
To protect your oral health, practice good oral hygiene daily:
Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a soft-bristled brush using fluoride toothpaste.
An electric toothbrush can be a great alternative to a manual toothbrush, especially for children, people with disabilities, older adults, and people who have arthritis or other conditions that make it difficult to brush well.
Use mouthwash to remove food particles left after brushing and flossing.
Eat a healthy diet and limit food with added sugars.
Replace your toothbrush every three months, or sooner if bristles are splayed or worn.