You brush your teeth every day – or so we hope – and usually twice a day. But have you ever stopped to ask yourself whether your brushing habits are living up to their full potential? Do you ever feel like you rush through your nightly brushing, or wonder why your teeth don’t feel as clean as they should? In addition to the many benefits of a professional dental cleaning, what you do at home greatly affects your oral health. So take a stroll through teeth brushing 101 to receive answers to some of the questions you may occasionally ask yourself about your dental hygiene.
Question #1: Am I brushing correctly?
You need to remember two things: First, brush every surface of your teeth. The front of your teeth, the backs of your teeth, and the chewing surfaces. Second, brush along your gumline at a 45-degree angle, motioning your brush away from your gums to address hard-to-reach plaque.
Question #2: When was the last time I bought a toothbrush – did I even buy the right kind?
Can’t remember the last time you replaced your toothbrush? It’s probably time for a new one. If your brush looks like it’s wearing out, it is definitely time for a replacement. However, if three months has passed and your brush is still in good shape, go ahead and replace it anyway. Toothbrushes provide a welcoming environment to germs, so occasional replacement is ideal. As for the brush type – always choose a soft bristle brush for gentle yet effective cleaning.
Question #3: Am I spending enough time brushing?
If you feel like you’re rushing, you probably are. We recommend spending about two minutes brushing every surface of your teeth at least twice daily. If you’re brushing after a meal, a quick brush is always helpful. However, making sure you brush your teeth thoroughly in the morning and once before you go to bed at night is your best bet for protecting your teeth and gums (in addition to scheduling six-month dental cleanings with our team).
Question #4: What else could I do to make my brushing more effective?
You can make sure you’re flossing at least once a day. While brushing works wonders to remove plaque from the surface of your teeth, it may not address tooth surfaces between teeth. To ensure you’re achieving a truly clean smile, add flossing to your daily routine.
About Your Shrewsbury General Dentists:
At Modern Dentistry, Todd A. Pizzi, DDS, and Luciana Messina, DDS, are dedicated to providing high-quality cosmetic, restorative, and preventive dentistry services to patients and families in Shrewsbury, Worcester, North and South Grafton, Westborough, Southborough, Northborough, Boylston, Hopkinton, Millbury, and all surrounding communities. To schedule your next appointment, contact our office by calling (508) 842-8838 today.