Are You On the Naughty or Nice List When it Comes to Your Smile?


It’s the holiday season and the naughty and nice list is about to make its debut. There are specific steps you need to follow to be considered on the ‘nice list’ for your smile. If you’re not sure where you fall, our team at Niles Family Dentistry is here to help you figure it out. 

Signs You’re on the Nice List:

When it comes to your dental health, having an established daily routine is key, no matter what time of the year it is. To determine if you are on the nice or naughty list when it comes to your smile, ask yourself these questions. Have you been…

Have you been… brushing your teeth twice a day, two minutes each time you brush?

When life gets busy we often find ourselves brushing our teeth real fast as we run out the door or jump in bed after a long day. Brushing your teeth is the most important part of your daily dental care routine, so are you doing it correctly? The American Dental Association recommends that you:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled brush. The size and shape of your brush should fit your mouth allowing you to reach all areas easily. 
  • Replace your toothbrush every three to four months, or sooner if bristles are frayed. A worn toothbrush won’t clean your teeth properly. 
  • Make sure you are using an ADA-accepted toothpaste. 

Now that you know the basics of what you should be using to brush your teeth, here is the correct technique as recommended by the American Dental Association:

  • Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gums.
  • Gently move the brush back and forth in short (tooth-wide) strokes.
  • Brush the outer surfaces, the inner surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of the front teeth, tilt the brush vertically and make several up-and-down strokes. 

Start brushing your teeth like this and you’ll be on the nice list in no time!

Have you been… flossing your teeth daily? 

Flossing helps remove food and other particles that get stuck between your teeth in those hard-to-reach areas that a toothbrush can’t get to. Ideally, you should be flossing your teeth at least once a day. If you’re not sure how to properly brush, follow these 5 steps to get on the smile nice list:

  • Cut an 18” piece of floss and wind it around one of your middle fingers. Wind the remaining floss around the same finger of the opposite hand. This finger will take up the floss as it becomes dirty. 
  • Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and forefingers. 
  • Gently rub the floss between each tooth, being careful to never roughly hit the gums with the piece of floss. 
  • When the floss reaches the gum line, curve it into a ‘c’ hope against one tooth. Gently slide it into the space between the gum and the tooth. 
  • Hold the floss tightly against the tooth. Gently rub the side of the tooth, moving the flow away from the gum with up and down motions. Repeat this method between every tooth, being sure not to forget the backside of the last teeth. 

Have you been… scheduling an appointment to have your teeth cleaned twice a year? 

No matter how healthy you are, you need to have regular dental checkups once every six months. A dental checkup provides you with a deep cleaning of your teeth and gums, and allows a dentist to fully and thoroughly inspect your mouth to check for any potential signs of problems. You can’t see every area of your mouth on your own, which is why dental checkups are essential to having optimal oral health. 

Have you been… eating a healthy diet?

What you eat directly affects your oral health. If you eat a diet high in sugar and starch, you are more prone to developing an overgrowth of bad bacteria and developing tooth decay and cavities. On the other hand, if you are watching what you eat and only indulging in the sweet treats and drinks occasionally, you are doing your oral health a favor. 

Have you been… living a wellness lifestyle? 

In addition to eating healthy, have you been living a wellness lifestyle? Dr. Ashley Niles, our dentist at Niles Family Dentistry, is passionate about living a wellness lifestyle. This includes being eco-friendly, exercising regularly, and doing the most to achieve overall health. 

Get on the Nice List with Niles Family Dentistry

So, are you on the nice list or naughty list when it comes to your smile? If you think you might be on the naughty list, don’t fret! There is still time to turn things around. Scheduling an appointment with Dr. Niles is a good first step. Call us today for an appointment at (720)-744-0001. 


Ashley Niles

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