Are you self conscious about your smile?
Do you want to know the best practices when it comes to the proper way to brush your teeth and floss?
As an adult, most of us think we’ve got everything figured out, especially when it comes to brushing our teeth. I mean, come on, we’ve been doing it since before we can remember.
But following up on best practices is always a good thing.
Pick the Right Toothbrush
One of the most important factors when brushing your teeth is to pick the right toothbrush. Oral hygiene is not created equal, nor are the brushes available to keep your smile sparkling.
- Any toothbrush you choose should have soft bristles. Hard bristles can cause many problems including causing gum tissue to pull back from teeth, which can expose the tooth root. This can be one of the major reasons your teeth are sensitive to hot and cold.
- Select a toothbrush head size that can easily fit into the mouth. You should aim to pick a brush that can clean one to two teeth at a time for maximum coverage while making sure each tooth is given enough attention.
- Powered toothbrushes are a bit of a controversy and some say that they don’t “clean” any better than a manual, however, they do offer nifty timing mechanisms to make sure you are brushing for the right amount of time.
Angle is Everything – Did you know that you should angle your toothbrush at 45 degrees? I know that I don’t always angle my brush, often times brushing horizontal to my tooth.
Brush Strokes – Small, back and forth strokes just wide enough to cover the tooth size is another important fact when brushing your teeth. This prevents you from excess gum irritation.
Show your Tongue Some Love – So many people fail to clean one of the largest surfaces in their mouth, your tongue. Proper brushing techniques include taking the time to brush your tongue, removing excess bacteria from your mouth.
Don’t Forget to Floss
Did you know that children should start flossing as early as 2 to 3 years old?
That’s right, if you have not been flossing since you could hold floss between your tiny hands, then chances are you are not properly cleaning your teeth.
Choosing the right size floss is an important factor when it comes to oral hygiene. If you have teeth closely touching each other, then using a finer string is recommended. If you have small gaps in your teeth, then using a larger twine can make your flossing experience faster and better.
Don’t forget to hit those hard to reach places way back in your mouth. I know they’re hard to get into, but they’re totally worth spending the time working out the food in your back teeth. After all, that’s where most of your chewing happens.
Set a Timer
Follow the two minute rule. Most dentists recommend at least 120 seconds of brushing.
Setting a timer to indicate when your brushing session is done to ensure the “proper” time is needed for each cleaning.
Timers can also be made into a game, offering a “race” for the children to finish all their teeth in the set time.
Parents and Children can even race against each other to demonstrate how long one should spend on each tooth in order to complete the set before time runs out.
One of the biggest stigmas is the fear of going to the dentist. Most find this to be the case not because of the experience itself, but the “idea” of going to the dentist.
Having a routine visit with your dentist will help you maintain healthy oral hygiene, while also identifying early signs of cavities or other potential issues.
Oral hygiene is a lifelong investment. Since most parents start their child’s brushing habits at the early age of 2, an adult should have impeccable hygiene. Unfortunately that’s not always the case due to various reasons. Whether you just fail to give your teeth the attention they need, find yourself too busy or tired and “skip” a brushing from time to time, or want to feel proud of your pearly whites. All of these tips can help you find the right balance of proper brushing techniques and successful hygiene.
So put down that chocolate bar and go check to see if you have any floss!