Your home oral hygiene habits are the corner stone to your dental health. While you know you are supposed to brush your teeth, most people do not brush their teeth correctly. If you are not using the appropriate brushing methods, you are not doing your oral health any good. As your family dentist in Newtown, PA, we want to ensure you are brushing correctly to protect your teeth from damage.
Brush Twice a Day
You need to brush your teeth twice a day to remove food particles, plaque, and tarter. Unfortunately, too many people do not brush as often as they should. In fact, the American Dental Association reports that only 49% of men and 56% of women brush twice a day. You need to brush for at least two minutes—once in the morning and once before bed.
Choose the Right Toothbrush
Your toothbrush is the most important tool at your disposal to care for your teeth. However, there are a lot of options, and you may not choose the right one. You need to choose a toothbrush that is supported by the ADA. This means the ADA has evaluated the toothbrush for being safe and effective.
Choose a toothbrush that is not too big or too small for your mouth. It is best to use a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid causing damage to your gums. While many tend to believe that an electric toothbrush is more effective, research shows that the method used to brush is more important than if the toothbrush is manual or electric.
Using a fluoride toothpaste, hold the handle of the toothbrush in the palm of your hand. The bristles should rest at a 45-degree angle to your teeth. Use light, gentle strokes to clean all the surfaces of your teeth, including the start of the gum line. You want to use a motion that starts at the gum and goes up to the crown of the tooth to thoroughly clean your mouth. Continue brushing all surfaces of the teeth for at least two minutes.
Replace Your Toothbrush
Over time, your toothbrush will begin to lose its effectiveness due to daily use. Not to mention, bacteria will begin to accumulate on the toothbrush. You want to replace your toothbrush at least every 3 months. In addition, replace your toothbrush immediately after an illness. If your toothbrush starts to look frayed or worn, you need to replace your toothbrush sooner.
Protect Your Teeth
In addition to brushing, you need to floss your teeth once a day. Flossing removes food, plaque and tarter that cannot be removed with a toothbrush. Your home oral hygiene is only half of the preventive care you need. Everyone over the age of two needs to visit their dentist twice a year for preventive appointments. As your family and children’s dentist in Newtown, PA, we offer the dental cleanings and checkups your family needs to protect their oral health.
If you need a preventive appointment or have questions about how to brush your teeth correctly, please contact our office today.