How to Brush Your Teeth
If you’re serious about looking after your teeth and gums then brushing and flossing is essential, as is using good quality fluoride toothpaste. You need to brush at least twice a day for at least 2 minutes each time, preferably first thing in the morning and last thing at night. It’s best to floss last thing at night just before you go to bed.
While most people might be pretty good about brushing, many skip regular flossing unless they can feel something stuck in between their teeth. If that sounds familiar then remember those contact areas in between your teeth account for approximately 1/3 of your tooth surfaces and there’s simply no way to clean in between your teeth with a normal toothbrush.
Quick Tips for Better Brushing and Flossing
Most of this brush our teeth automatically and don’t really think about what we’re doing or what we using. Paying a little bit of attention will help improve your routine.
- If it’s been a while since you invested a few dollars in a new tooth brush then it’s likely yours is looking pretty frayed around the edges.
- Most people need to replace their brush every two or three months or as soon as the bristles begin to look splayed. It’s a false economy to continue using a brush that’s well past its best.
- When picking a new brush choose one with softer bristles that are rounded at the ends as this will remove the plaque effectively but won’t damage your gums and teeth.
- It’s up to you as to whether you prefer a manual or electric toothbrush, as the efficacy of brushing is all down to technique.
- When brushing your teeth pay attention to what you’re doing, and make sure you clean every single tooth surface. This is something that can be easier to do if you approach tooth brushing methodically and think about your mouth being split into four quarters or quadrants.
- Aim to clean one quadrant every 30 seconds before moving onto the next section.
- Once you’ve finished brushing then spit out excess toothpaste but don’t rinse your mouth as the fluoride in your toothpaste will continue working to protect your teeth.
Flossing is something a lot of people struggle with, and one problem is being too stingy with the dental floss which makes it harder to manipulate and more difficult to use a clean section for each tooth.
- Breaking off a nice long section of approximately 18 inches and making sure it’s the right width to fit easily in between each tooth will make the job much easier and far more effective.
- You need to take the dental floss right down to just below the gum line as this is an area where dental plaque tends to build up.
It’s up to you as to whether or not you choose to use mouthwash after brushing and flossing. Most are designed to provide cosmetic effects through temporarily improving your breath or masking odors such as garlic or onions. Some do have more therapeutic effects and contain fluoride or antimicrobial agents to help improve oral health.
Midtown Dentistry is here to help, so if you think your brushing and flossing techniques could use a little improvement then please ask us for practical advice and information. If you have young children then ask us for advice on fluoride usage.