Teeth brushing is an essential component of at-home dental care. Even if you see your dentist every six months for a dental exam and teeth cleaning as recommended, this doesn’t make up for all the months in between. Your daily routine of cleaning your teeth and gums contributes to a healthy mouth and wards off tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems. Find out if you could be doing things a little differently, a little better.
How Long Do You Brush?
Most adults have a teeth-brushing routine they’ve been doing so long they may not consider whether they’re brushing long enough. A minimum of two minutes of brushing is the recommendation to really remove plaque. If you have braces, a dental bridge, or other appliances where food can get trapped, add extra time.
How Often Do You Brush?
Teeth brushing should occur both morning and night. Once to clean off the build-up of saliva and bacteria from the night, once to clean off the day’s collection of food particles and plaque. If you want to brush more often, have at it, but make sure you at least brush twice a day.
What Technique Do You Use?
You want to clean all your teeth when you brush, which means more than just the front teeth because they’re the easiest to reach and the ones people see the most. Use small circular motions to go from tooth to tooth, getting the front and back of each tooth and all chewing surfaces.
Do You Always Remember to Floss?
Flossing is non-negotiable. You may be diligent about brushing, but without using dental floss you miss half the surfaces of your teeth – the in-between places your toothbrush cannot reach. Get in there with your favorite floss to pluck away bacteria and plaque before it hardens to tartar.
Do You Brush Too Hard?
Sometimes people try to make up for good brushing with hard brushing. But too much pressure can wear down your enamel and cause gum recession, both of which leave you susceptible to infection. Repetition, not force, is the most effective way to clean your teeth.
Do You Follow Best Practices?
The tools you use to clean your teeth and how you take care of them affect your oral health and dental care too. Switch out your toothbrush every three to four months and store it where it can air dry – not with other toothbrushes and not in a moist environment. If you want to be gentle but thorough with cleaning your teeth, invest in an electric toothbrush that does the important work for you.
Get Dental Care from Your Arlington Dentist
Need a tutorial on the best brushing techniques? It doesn’t matter what age you are – your dentist and dental hygienist are happy to guide you and answer any questions that making at-home dental care easier to manage. If it’s time to schedule your teeth cleaning and dental exam, that’s the perfect time to learn more about the best dental products for your teeth and gums. Contact Dr. Alana Macalik and her team in Arlington, TX.