Brushing your teeth is probably a standard part of your daily routine, but chances are you aren’t following the American Dental Association’s guidelines for cleaning your teeth properly. The ADA currently recommends that you brush your teeth at minimum two times each day – preferably morning and night or anytime you eat foods that contain sugar. When you brush, your toothbrush should be tilted at a 45 degree angle to your gum line. As you brush, be sure to remove debris from every surface of the teeth – including the backs of the teeth, near the gum line, and on chewing surfaces. It is also important to clean your tongue, as bacteria can accumulate there and cause bad breath.
Did you know…
that the type of toothbrush you use makes a difference in your oral health? The ADA recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush with a head that is ergonomically proportioned to the inside of your mouth. Medium or hard-bristle toothbrushes can actually cause abrasions to the teeth and gums, making them more vulnerable to decay. The ADA also recommends replacing your toothbrush about four times yearly or whenever the bristles become frayed.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I change my brushing habits?
You may need to change your brushing habits if you are experiencing signs of poor oral hygiene. Examples of common symptoms include bleeding or reddened gums, excessive plaque build-up, decaying teeth and receding gum lines. To find out if you are brushing correctly or if you need to change your brushing habits, make an appointment with us for a full consultation.
What should I expect if I begin brushing my teeth correct?
Depending on your situation- you may start to notice benefits immediately- such as healthy non-bleeding gums, clean teeth for a bright smile, and good breath. For some people the benefits of proper tooth brushing techniques may not be experienced immediately, but they are noticeable long-term. Over time, brushing too hard or not brushing enough can produce oral health complications that cannot be reversed and require special treatment. By adopting proper brushing habits, you could avoid spending time and money with us.
Is there anything else I need to do in addition to brushing properly?
Yes. It is important that you also floss daily and use toothpaste that contains fluoride each day. You should also schedule regular dental exams and follow up with potentially needed treatment.