Am I Brushing My Teeth Correctly?
Brushing the correct way helps eliminate harmful bacteria in your mouth that can lead to gingivitis that, if left untreated, can turn into gum disease. Chances are you learned to brush your teeth earlier on in life as a child and other than going to the dentist, probably haven’t had much of a refresher on the ins and outs of proper oral hygiene technique.
Taking care of your teeth is as important as any other daily lifestyle or fitness routine and not only can a clean mouth decrease your chances for tooth decay and gum disease, it can also help to keep your immune system on the up and up.
This article will go over those techniques to make your smile be brighter and healthier. Let’s take a quick look at these steps and what can happen if proper hygiene is overlooked.
Brush and Floss Daily
The American Dental Association recommends you use the 2 by 2 method, which means brushing twice daily for two minutes each time. Brushing your teeth daily is an effective way to remove plaque and prevent tartar.
Plaque is a yellow or clear film of bacteria that builds up if you do not brush your teeth frequently. If you allow the plaque to stay on your teeth for too long, it will harden to create tartar. Tartar has a darker color than plaque and cannot be removed by regular brushing. Plaque and tartar will eventually begin to erode the tooth enamel, cause cavities, and can lead to tooth loss.
Make sure to add flossing to your oral hygiene routine as it ger rid of food and plaque that your toothbrush cannot reach. Daily flossing can help reduce the risk of cavities and gingivitis. Gingivitis is the beginning of gum disease, which can turn into periodontal disease if not treated.
Steps to Proper Oral Hygiene
Use the Correct Toothbrush
Soft-bristled toothbrushes, either manual or electric, are the most recommended toothbrushes on the market.
Brushing too hard with a medium or hard-bristled toothbrush could actually damage your tooth enamel. Make sure whichever toothbrush you choose, it is comfortable to handle and use.
Replace Toothbrush When Recommended
Manual and Electric toothbrushes need to be replaced every 3-4 months as the bristles are becoming worn out and less effective. Most electric toothbrushes, allow you to just change the bristle head and keep the mechanism for brushing.
Use the Proper Toothpaste
Always look for the ADA (The American Dental Association) Seal of Acceptance when searching for a new toothpaste. All toothpaste that has the ADA seal must contain fluoride. Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel and helps to remove plaque as well. There are also different types of toothpaste that help reduce tooth sensitivity, fight tartar build-up, reduce gingivitis, and prevent enamel erosion.
Proper Brushing Technique
It is recommended to floss before you brush, so make sure to floss your teeth gently but thoroughly before you begin the following steps.
Step 1: For adults, squeeze a pea-sized amount of toothpaste onto your toothbrush. For children, the amount should be around the size of a grain of rice.
Step 2: Hold your toothbrush on your teeth at a 45-degree angle to your gums, this will help get the hard to reach spots.
Step 3: Use short and gentle strokes when you brush. You don’t need to press down hard or scrub your teeth, as the toothpaste and bristles are designed to get the plaque off. Brush against your gum line to get rid of any trapped food or plaque.
Step 4: Brush the outside and inside surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Make sure to give your tongue a few brushes as well.
Step 5: For the inside surfaces of your front teeth, tilt your toothbrush vertically and make small up-and-down strokes.
Step 6: Rinse your toothbrush thoroughly to get all of the bacteria off of it.
Keep Your Smile Healthy and Bright with Carrie Muzny D.D.S.
Brushing your teeth is only one of the best practices to keep your teeth healthy. Having regular dental visits is still especially helpful in spotting potential dental issues.
At Carrie Muzny D.D.S., we offer the highest-quality dental services for our patients in The Woodlands and surrounding areas. Our highly acclaimed dentists are not only exceptionally trained in modern preventative techniques, but also have attained academic honors and continue to refine their skills and knowledge year after year in preventative dentistry, restorative dentistry, surgical procedures, and cosmetic dentistry.
Contact us today and let us help you get and maintain that perfect smile. With our state-of-the-art technology and a vast range of smile-perfecting procedures, we stay atop the field and deliver smiles as sunny as the state of Texas!
You can even request a virtual consultation!