Brushing your teeth is the most important tool to prevent cavities and gum disease. Because it’s so important, you should be sure you’re using the most effective tools and the proper technique to remove as much plaque from your teeth as possible. If you aren’t sure you’re cleaning your teeth as well as you could, ask our dentist for guidance.
Brushing and Flossing Technique
Proper brushing and flossing technique will greatly increase the effectiveness of your everyday dental care. Preferably, you should brush after each meal to remove food fragments that are left behind after you eat. Each session brushing should last two minutes to ensure you brush long enough to remove plaque, food particles, and bacteria from your mouth. Brushing also helps massage the gums, keeping them healthy.
You should floss once a day to remove food particles and plaque from between the teeth and just under the gumline. Rather than just “sawing” the floss between the teeth, you should wrap the tooth with the floss in a “C” shape and use a polishing motion. Our dentist can help ensure you use a proper technique.
Choosing the Right Tools
Choosing the right toothbrush and the right kind of floss helps make your at-home dental care even more effective. Your toothbrush should be on the softer side to prevent damage to your tooth enamel. Too-vigorous brushing with a too-stiff toothbrush can erode tooth enamel and cause permanent damage. If you have a hard time holding onto your toothbrush due to arthritis or other issues, ask our dentist about special brushes that are easier to maneuver.
Floss can be difficult to maneuver, as well, for younger patients or for older patients who have joint mobility issues. Floss holders can help make it easier to floss effectively. These can be threaded with your favorite floss or purchased with the floss already loaded. There are also special brushing and flossing tools for patients who are wearing braces. Water-based cleaning systems are also very effective. Ask our dentist if you have any questions or concerns about the tools you’re using to clean your teeth.
Call the office of Dr. Daniel C. Bush today and set up your next appointment.