Since you’re not a dentist, you may not know it’s National Brush Day. The idea is to get children – and adults too – brushing their teeth using oral hygiene best practices. This is important given that millions of Americans suffer from untreated tooth decay. This causes a great deal of dental pain and even tooth loss. We can help you improve your tooth brushing.
Check out our tips here and ask for more info at your next dental exam if you’d like. We’re even happy to recommend toothpaste and toothbrushes.
- Get Yourself a Good Toothbrush – Some brushes come with bells and whistles like timers, different brushing modes, and pressure sensors. But the most important thing is to get a brush that you feel comfortable using. The handle should feel good in your hand, and the head should fit easily into your mouth. Always use a brush with soft bristles. Hard bristles can damage your enamel.
- Don’t Rush Your Brushing – You probably known it’s best to brush at least twice a day. But you may not know you should brush two minutes each time. This is where a timer on a brush can come in handy. Or simply set a timer for two minutes on your phone. To make it more fun for your children – or yourself – find some two-minute songs you like and brush to the music.
- Use a Gentle Touch – A common mistake is brushing too hard. It’s understandable. You figure the harder you scrub, the cleaner your teeth will get. But overly aggressive brushing can cause your enamel to wear away. This not only makes you more prone to cavities, it can adversely affect the appearance of your smile.
- Cover All Surfaces – Many people focus on the front sides and chewing surfaces of their teeth while brushing but don’t pay enough attention to the sides of their teeth facing the tongue. Make sure you include this area. In fact, brushing your tongue (or using a tongue scraper) is a good idea too, since bacteria accumulates there.
- Don’t Forget Your Gums – Another area that many people tend to miss is the place where the teeth meet the gums. It’s especially important to brush that area at the gumline. Bacteria can collect there and cause an infection. At that point, you’ll need a special deep cleaning treatment to eliminate the disease. Left untreated, gum disease can cause serious dental problems including tooth loss.
- Replace Your Brush Regularly – You’ll want to swap out your toothbrush (or brush head on an electric brush) for a new one every three or four months. Some brushes have a feature to remind you. Or you can put a reminder on your phone. It’s a good idea to switch sooner if you’ve been sick or if the bristles look especially worn or frayed.
Call Beaumont Family Dentistry today to schedule an appointment or visit us online.