From a young age, we are taught the importance of brushing our teeth. Most of us know that brushing two to three times a day is necessary, but are we brushing effectively?
Here is a checklist to help you brush better:
Are you using the right toothbrush?
Contrary to most people’s beliefs, not all toothbrushes have the same effectiveness. Your toothbrush should fit comfortably in your hand and your mouth. The bristles should be soft; stiff bristles can harm your gums.
Are you applying too much pressure?
Some people think the harder they brush, the more effective they’ll be. That’s not the case. Too much pressure while brushing can weaken tooth enamel, and can hurt your gums. The same result can occur if you brush too often. Twice a day is sufficient, and three times a day is great, but more than that can cause harm.
Which toothpaste are you using?
Brand name, shmand name. Your main concern in choosing the right toothpaste should be: it contains fluoride and an ADA seal on the label. If you have dental concerns or are unsure which toothpaste to use, try consulting your doctor for a recommendation.
Are you flossing?
The American Dental Association recommends cleaning between your teeth once a day. It’s important because plaque that’s hasn’t been removed by brushing can eventually harden into calculus or tartar. Flossing may also help prevent gum disease and cavities. If Nylon floss isn’t your thing, try the y-shaped disposable flossers, water picks, and threaders that can help you reach.
Are you brushing every tooth?
When you miss an area of your mouth, bacteria can multiply and cause decay. Make sure you reach every surface of your teeth when you brush (even the backs!). Make sure you floss between every tooth. And don’t forget to brush your tongue to decrease bacteria, fungi and dead cells that can cause bad breath!
If you have any additional questions on dental hygiene, feel free to contact Dr. Adam S. Harwood at http://www.adamharwooddmd.com/contactus.