Growing up, your parents likely instilled in you the necessity of brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time if you wanted to keep your teeth healthy and strong. But if you have been struggling to maintain this essential oral hygiene habit, we have some tips to help you get your smile back on track. This is especially vital if recent dental exams have revealed new cavities or the telltale signs of gum disease. Today we’re going to talk about going back to basics, so you can brush your teeth and keep them healthier for your best smile!
Why You Brush
You need to brush your teeth every day to clear away dental plaque that collects around the teeth and gumline, damaging precious enamel and gum tissue. This sticky bacterial film is made up of bits of trapped food particles and harmful oral bacteria that quickly harden into tartar or calculus, if not removed daily! Brushing your teeth at least twice a day helps keep plaque to a manageable minimum and protects your smile. At your next dental cleaning, our hygienist will remove any hardened tartar or calculus with special instruments.
How to Brush
You need to get a good toothbrush that cleans without damaging your enamel or sensitive gum tissue. The goal is to prevent cavities and tooth decay as well as periodontal disease (you need healthy gums to hold your teeth in place) that could harm your smile. This means brushing gently so you avoid dental abrasion, gum recession, and tooth sensitivity.
First, you want to tackle the outer surfaces of your teeth. Carefully brush both the top and bottom teeth but don’t “saw” at them, just brush gently and thoroughly. Be sure to hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to clear out plaque around the gumline where it likes to collect. Next, clean the back of your teeth which also holds onto plaque. Finally, brush the top (chewing) surfaces of your teeth to dislodge any lingering plaque and food particles. Don’t forget to brush your tongue while you are at it, because that’s a common area where bacteria can thrive. Plus, your breath will thank you!
Get the Right Tools for Your Smile
You can get a regular toothbrush or an electric one, depending on your manual dexterity and commitment. You have to use it daily to protect your oral health, so find a toothbrush you enjoy using and then use it every day! As long as the toothbrush you use comes with the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval, you can brush your teeth knowing that your toothbrush will do what it claims to do. The toothbrush head needs to be small enough to fit inside your mouth and easy to maneuver. Brush twice a day for two minutes to keep your teeth cavity-free. You will want to replace your toothbrush (or toothbrush head) when it starts to fray, usually every three to four months and also after an illness to protect against reinfection.
Use an ADA-approved toothpaste that is best for your smile. Are you fighting cavities? Protecting against tooth sensitivity? Whitening your teeth? There’s a paste for every need!
Book an Appointment
Your daily oral hygiene habits play a crucial role in keeping your smile bright! We hope these dental brushing tips help you keep your smile looking and feeling healthy and beautiful. Our Valley View Dental teams in Romeoville, Naperville and Montgomery, Illinois are excited to help you keep your smile strong! Call today to learn more or schedule an appointment.