How to brush your teeth correctly
We brush our teeth so often that sometimes we are on automatic pilot while we brush. There are also times when we are so rushed to get ready for work in the morning or are so tired before bed at night that we may be hurrying through the process of cleaning our teeth. The result may be cavities or gum damage.
Take a moment to read through the following brushing techniques so that you can make sure you are doing the job right.
- Do not use a brush with hard bristles or press too firmly against your teeth when you brush. This may damage tooth enamel and gums.
- Start in a different place every time you brush your teeth. You may not realize it, but you are paying more attention to the first teeth you brush than the last teeth you brush. If you start brushing in a different place in your mouth each time, your teeth will get equal attention over time.
- Change directions. If you are only brushing your teeth up and down or side to side each time you brush, you may be missing food particles trapped between your teeth. Combine the two motions each time you brush.
- Brush your teeth each morning and each night. Do whatever it takes to create a habit of brushing your teeth regularly. This is one of the best ways to establish good oral health. Your teeth and gums will thank you!
- Take your time. Brushing your teeth in 30 seconds flat and calling it good will not produce a healthy mouth. Brush for at least two minutes by setting a timer or by humming a song that last two minutes.
- Brush the outer, inner, and chewing surface of your teeth. Brushing your teeth properly is not just about the length of time you brush. Using the proper brushing technique will lead to a healthy mouth. Hold your toothbrush at a forty-five degree angle to your teeth near the gum line, and using circling motions, move from tooth to tooth. Before your finish, brush your tongue to get rid of the bacteria lingering there.
One thing you may not know about brushing your teeth: The acid in the food you eat softens the tooth enamel. If you brush directly after eating, you are brushing away this softened enamel. It is best to wait for at least thirty minutes after eating before brushing so that your mouth can return to its normal pH level.
No matter how consistently and how well you brush, a dental check-up twice a year is vital to keeping your smile shiny and healthy.
What Have You Done for Your Toothbrush Lately?
Your toothbrush takes care of your mouth in so many ways. It keeps your teeth, gums, and tongue clean and accesses hard-to-reach areas in your mouth to remove food particles and plaque. It reduces your risk for gum disease, cavities, and tooth loss. It keeps your body healthy, your breath fresh, and your smile bright and confident.
Your toothbrush does a lot for you, but what do you do for it?
- Clean your toothbrush!
Rinsing your toothbrush under the tap after you finish brushing does not get rid of the bacteria and germs you just scrubbed off your teeth. The most convenient way for you to clean your toothbrush is to pop it into a glass of mouthwash you keep by the sink. Mouthwash contains alcohol and/or antiseptic agents that not only kill germs but also prevent bacteria from growing. There are other ways to clean your toothbrush that require a little more effort on your part. Hold the bristle end of the toothbrush in boiling water for a few seconds or run it through the dishwasher on the hot cycle (without detergent, of course). No matter what you choose to do, cleaning your toothbrush regularly is one of the best ways you can take care of it.
- Store your toothbrush correctly.
Because you are trying to keep your toothbrush as germ-free as possible, do not store it on the countertop near the toilet. Every time the toilet is flushed, germs and bacteria become airborne and land on surfaces throughout the bathroom—including the surface of your toothbrush. Also, do not store your toothbrush in an airtight container (such as a travel toothbrush carrier) because germs flourish in moist areas. Instead, store your toothbrush bristle-end up where it can air out: a closed bathroom drawer or a medicine cabinet. And put the lid of the toilet down when flushing to reduce the risk of germs spreading throughout your bathroom.
- Get rid of that old toothbrush.
Are you brushing with a toothbrush that has bristles that are worn down, bent, yellowed, or frayed? When your toothbrush looks this sorry, it is time to get a replacement—a worn and old toothbrush simply cannot clean your teeth properly. You’ll love the feel of the stiff, clean bristles against your teeth, and your teeth will get a proper cleaning.
- Ask us for a toothbrush recommendation.
We are anxious to help you keep your mouth clean and healthy. If you have questions about which toothbrush to use, give us a call or ask us at your next dental appointment. We will gladly answer any of your questions regarding your teeth, your toothbrush, and your brushing routine. If you take care of your toothbrush, it will take care of you.
Learning how to brush your teeth properly is the first step to maintaining healthy teeth and gums by removing food particles, plaque, and tartar from the surfaces of your teeth. Plus, it helps minimize the risk of tooth decay and gum disease, the major causes of tooth loss. The toothbrush is an oral hygiene instrument used to clean the teeth, gums, and tongue. It consists of a head of tightly clustered bristle–atop of which toothpaste is supposed to go–mounted on a handle which facilitates the cleaning of hard-to-reach areas of the mouth.
WHY IS FLOSSING ESSENTIAL TO YOUR ORAL HEALTH
We know you are tired of hearing it BUT… Flossing is essential to good oral hygiene. Why floss if you already brush your teeth, especially since it is a laborious task. Trust your dental professionals when we say that flossing will increase your dental and overall health.
How Does Flossing Benefit Me?
Many don’t understand that skipping flossing skips cleaning 35 percent of the tooth surfaces in your mouth, where brush bristles cannot reach between your teeth. Unfortunately, however, bacteria can! Flossing completes the cleaning process of your teeth.
Regular flossing can:
- Prevent cavities. Have you ever flossed, even after brushing, and weresurprised to find a “second meal”? Flossing removes food debris and plaque and prevents cavities between the teeth.
- Bad breath. Food and plaque left between teeth can leave a bad smell. Gross!
- Prevent tartar and gum disease. If left too long, plaque hardens into tartar (calculus), which then requires removal by a dental professional. Tartar can lead to gum disease and eventually tooth loss. Gum disease is directly correlated with other diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, joint problems and stroke.
- Maintain appearance. The constant presence of food debris and plaque darken and dull teeth over time. Flossing helps maintain a whiter and brighter smile!
When flossing is effective?
An article published by American Academy of Periodontology showed that flossing followed by brushing is preferred than flossing after brushing in order to reduce interdental plaque and increase fluoride concentration. To maximize the benefits of flossing it must be done correctly. In a 2006, researchers wanted to if daily flossing at home had the same benefits as having daily flossing done by professionals. The study showed that participants who were flossed by professionals had a 40 percent decrease in risk of cavities than their at-home flossing counterparts. The researchers concluded that flossing, when done properly, has a substantial, positive effect on oral health.
Many people just snap the floss in between their teeth and pull it back out, thinking they have done everything that is needed. To correctly floss around the tooth, the floss must be curved around the tooth, hugging it in a C-shaped pattern and moving it up and down against the surface in between the teeth from the height of the chewing surface to gently down below the gums. Don’t forget the adjacent tooth surface before you pull the floss back out!
5 REASONS WHEN TO SEE THE DENTIST
We have all heard it said that “prevention is key”–this is most true when it comes to your dental health! Visiting your dentist regularly is crucial to your overall oral health. For most people, that will just entail two regular dental cleanings a year. For others, that will not be the case. How do you know when your signs or symptoms should not wait until your next scheduled appointment?
- Pain and Aches
Tooth pain is the top reason to contact our office. When you are suffering with a toothache it can mean that a cavity has worsened to the point that the dental pulp is becoming infected.
Powering through your pain is not a good option-as it usually does not just go away on it’s own! An aching jaw and frequent headaches are also reasons to come in to see the dentist.
Many times these issues are related to oral health problems such as teeth-grinding (bruxism) and your dentist is here to help you!
- Bleeding Gums and Mouth Sores
Sores in your mouth tend to go away on their own, but letting your dentist check out any as they appear is best-as these can be a way of detecting infection or signs of disease. Bleeding gums after brushing and flossing are causes for concern as well—especially if you already use a soft-bristled brush. This one is a definite reason to come in and see the dentist, since bleeding gums are one of the first symptoms of gum disease! Do not ignore your body’s warning signs!
- Prior Dental Work
Have you had dental work in the past that is bothering you? Waiting until your next regularly scheduled appointment to get it fixed will likely only cause your problem to worsen. Fillings that are old and worn-out need to be replaced so that bacteria does not set in and thrive in the gaps between the filling and your tooth.
Chipped or cracked crowns can allow infection to set in, as well, so they too must be replaced quickly.
- Serious Medical Concerns
Many medical conditions that cause serious concern for our patients, can also have a direct impact on their oral health as well. Diabetes, eating disorders, and gum disease all affect your oral health, and the treatment plan for certain issues can have a negative impact. Dry mouth-which can seriously compromise the health of your mouth- is a side effect of many prescribed medications. Always remember to discuss any newly diagnosed conditions and new prescriptions with your dentist so that it can be documented in your health records.
- Bad Breath
If you find yourself having a difficult time with bad breath, visiting the dentist can help! A lack of minty fresh breath can be a sign of gum disease or other underlying health problems. Your dentist can help you determine the cause and find a solution.
While each of these top 5 signs and symptoms are reasons to warrant a call to our office, we wish to stress once again, that prevention is key when it comes to your oral health.
By keeping your regularly scheduled cleaning appointments every six months, we are better able to catch those dental health problems that occur gradually over time.
By working together, we can assist you in having your best oral health possible!
For all of your family, cosmetic or restorative dental needs, we invite you to contact Paris Family Dental. Call us today to schedule your appointment at (903) 732-0061! Visit us at 2333 Lamar Ave, Paris, TX 75460 to learn more about our team, our practice, and how we provide excellence in dentistry in our area.