If you are like most, brushing your teeth every day is like getting dressed or tying your shoes. But what if you’ve been doing it wrong all these years? Just because you have deep experience in brushing your teeth doesn’t mean you’ve necessarily been doing it in the best or correct way.
Here are some common mistakes people make when it comes to brushing. Are you guilty?
Using the Wrong Toothbrush
There are many different types of toothbrushes available, including manual and powered versions. While it is mostly up to your personal preference, the texture and firmness of the bristles is not always negotiable. If you are using a hard-bristled toothbrush, you may be putting yourself at risk for gum recession and enamel damage over time. Make sure to ask your dentist which toothbrush is right or wrong for your unique smile!
Not Replacing Your Toothbrush Often Enough
You should toss out your toothbrush and use a new one every three months, or as soon as the bristles start fraying. If you don’t, you will fail to reap all the benefits of your oral hygiene routine.
Brushing In Circles
Technique matters when it comes to brushing your teeth. If your brushing strokes follow a large circular motion, you are likely to miss some of your teeth surfaces. Instead, use a 45-degree angle and gently brush the outside, inside and chewing surface of each tooth with a short, back-and-forth motion.
Not Brushing Long Enough
If you not brushing twice a day for a full two minutes (that’s 120 seconds), then you are falling short on your teeth cleaning routine. Use the timer app on your phone and get in the habit of brushing for the duration that the American Dental Association recommends for optimal oral health.
Brushing Too Hard
Food, bacteria and plaque can all be removed with gentle brushing strokes. There’s no need to be aggressive or forceful when brushing your teeth. In fact, you could be causing more harm than good if you are brushing too hard. A telltale sign that you need to lighten up is frayed bristles in your toothbrush.
Forgetting to Brush Your Tongue
Millions of bacteria live on your tongue every single day. If you neglect to clean this part of your mouth, you could be setting yourself up for bad breath as well as sabotaging your tooth brushing efforts. The bacteria on your tongue can quickly transfer to your clean teeth if you haven’t brushed your tongue.
Skipping the Floss
Once you rinse your mouth and put down your toothbrush, your dental hygiene tasks are not done. It’s time to pick up your floss and reach the nearly 35% of your tooth surface that you couldn’t clean with your toothbrush.
Avoiding Dental Visits
Did you know that even the best, most diligent brushers can’t keep a healthy mouth if they don’t visit their dentist. Routine dental visits are critical. A professional teeth cleaning from your dentist is the only way to remove plaque or tartar once it has hardened on your teeth.
Need to schedule that dental checkup? Call Park South Dentistry. We promise a comfortable and pleasant experience.
Posted on behalf of Dr. David Janash, Park South Dentistry
30 Central Park South, Suite 13C
New York, NY 10019
Phone: (212) 355-2000