Why Do We Brush Our Teeth?
Brushing is the most effective method for removing harmful plaque from your teeth and gums. Getting the debris off your teeth and gums in a timely manner prevents bacteria from turning sugars into cavity causing acids.
Most dentists agree that brushing after each meal and at bedtime with a fluoridated toothpaste is ideal.
Brushing Techniques & Tips
Here are some popular brushing techniques that work:
- Circular Motion: Use a circular motion to brush only two or three teeth at a time, gradually covering the entire mouth.
- 45-Degree Angle: Place your toothbrush next to your teeth at a 45-degree angle and gently brush in a circular motion, not up and down. This kind of motion wears down your tooth structure and can lead to receding gums, or expose the root of your tooth. You should brush all surfaces of your teeth - front, back, top, and between other teeth, rocking the brush back and forth gently to remove any plaque growing under the gum.
- Brush ALL Mouth Surfaces: Don't forget the other surfaces of your mouth that are covered in bacteria - including the gums, the roof and floor of your mouth, and most importantly, your tongue. Brushing your tongue not only removes trapped bacteria and other disease-causing germs, but it also freshens your breath.
- Replace Your Toothbrush: Remember to replace your brush when the bristles begin to spread because a worn toothbrush will not properly clean your teeth.
- Three Minutes: Effective brushing usually takes about three minutes. Believe it or not, studies have shown that most people rush during tooth brushing spending less than one minute.
- Electric Toothbrushes: Electric brushes such as Sonicare can be very effective in removing plaque. We often recomend them in patients that have difficulty with conventional brushes.