44 | www. Char l es tonPhys i c i ans . com | www.Hea l thL i nksChar l es ton . com What do you consider to be the No. 1 priority in maintaining excellent oral hygiene? Drinking lots of water. Assuming dentists take the best care of their own teeth, can you share with us your go-to secret to teeth whitening? No secrets here – just a quality peroxide-based whitening gel. How many times a day do you brush your teeth and why? Two to three times as I don’t like any plaque staying on my teeth after meals. What is your personal suggestion to getting rid bad breath? Good oral hygiene habits and regular checkups to rule out cavities or gum disease. How many times a day do you floss? Why is flossing so important to you? I floss every night. I see damage from lack of flossing every day. What advice do you give to young children and teens on caring for their teeth? What is the single most important thing they can do? Set good habits now that will pay dividends in the future. How many times a year do you see a dentist? I check my own teeth through photos and X-rays, and I trust my hygienists, who I see twice a year. Have you ever had a cavity? How do you think you got it? No – thankfully and luckily. What is one thing you would never do as a dentist? Go to bed without brushing? Drink liquids like red wine that darken teeth? I would never go to bed without my floss, rinse and brush routine. What advice would you offer to someone who is either too scared to visit a dentist or too worried about the cost? Bring a support person with you for moral support and accountability. There are lots of options to calm your fears, and the cost may be much less than you think.