In the spirit of back-to-school season, we thought we’d go back to the basics for a minute and cover something you learned a long, long time ago: how to brush your teeth. Properly. I don’t mean a lazy, I-had-to-wake-up-early scrub and rinse. You know that’s not good for your teeth–don’t cut corners in one of the most crucial parts of good dental care!
If you think you could stand to, well, brush up on your brushing habits, don’t worry–you’re not alone. Your dentist in Brampton sees adults all the time who could use a little refresher course in mouth care. And because we care about you and your health, we’re here to remind you how to brush those teeth, in five simple steps.
1: Get the Right Angle
To start with, make sure you’re brushing at a 45 degree angle, rather than the more natural-feeling 90 degree angle. Keeping your brush slightly tilted will allow you to easily sweep or roll the brush away from the gum line, covering your entire tooth.
2: Be Thorough
Too many of us get lazy while we’re brushing, which results in missed areas and ample opportunity for plaque to build up. To avoid this, try brushing in chunks: maybe starting with all the outer surfaces, then moving to the inner surfaces, then finishing with the chewing surfaces. Move from the upper teeth to the lower teeth, or vice versa. But don’t always brush in the same order–the last place you brush could become neglected. Switch it up every now and then, always making sure you hit all surfaces.
3: Watch Your Motion
Big, sweeping back and forth motions can scrape surfaces and lead to gum recession, which can cause more serious problems–like gum disease–down the line. Hard brushing is also damaging. For the best results, use short, soft strokes and move in an up-and-down motion, rather than side-to-side.
4: Time It
We all know that we should brush for at least two minutes, twice a day. But let me tell you, many adults are far from getting their full four minutes in every day. Don’t slack here–the time factor is one of the most crucial ingredients in preventing tooth decay. After all, there’s no way you can do a truly thorough brush job in under two minutes. To help you put in the full time, every time, you can pull out the old-fashioned two minute egg timer, or try using the stopwatch on your phone.
5: Don’t Forget the Tongue
Even if you’re doing a top-notch job of brushing your teeth and flossing every day, you’re missing a big part of dental hygiene if you’re not brushing your tongue, too. Our tongues harbor a lot of the bacteria that cause bad breath and tooth decay, so brushing there is just as important as anywhere else. Clean it just like you do your teeth: brush (softly) back and forth, then side to side.
Your Brampton Dentist Cares
So there you have it, folks, five easy steps to make sure you’re brushing properly, twice a day, every day. Combine this habit with daily flossing and a dental examination every six months and you’ll be on the road to keeping your teeth strong, healthy and beautiful for a lifetime!