Brushing: Are You Doing It Right?
Are you proud of your brushing habits? We are not just talking about the number of times you brush, but rather your technique, products and duration. If you are doing it wrong, brushing your teeth could do your smile more harm than good.
Don’t let your efforts be in vain, find out if you are guilty of these common brushing mishaps:
How’s your motion? Enamel is made of tightly packed, glass-like rods that extend out toward the surface of the tooth. If you brush side to side, you can break these brittle rods and your teeth may crack or weaken. Try using a circular motion and keep your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle.
How’s your pressure? Brushing too hard can lead to gum irritation, gum recession and sensitive teeth. Remember that in order to remove plaque, you don’t need to scrub your teeth like you do the shower floor. Furthermore, aggressive and forceful brushing can also damage your tooth enamel over time.
Are you using the right toothbrush? Buy a toothbrush with soft bristles to protect your teeth. It will still get the cleaning job done and minimize damage. If an electric toothbrush helps you brush longer and more thoroughly, invest in one. However, proper brushing habits using a manual toothbrush are just as effective as the most expensive electric one.
Are you using the right toothpaste? . Be smart about the toothpaste you pick. There are many varieties on the market today and your dentist help you chose on that is best for your smile. If you have sensitive teeth, you may want to avoid strong whitening toothpaste and instead choose a product that addresses that concern
Are you using the right floss? Perhaps the better question is, are you using floss at all? Flossing is responsible for cleaning up to 35% of your tooth surface. Whatever type of floss makes you floss is the one you should use!
How long are you brushing? Dentists recommend brushing twice a day for two minutes each time. Chances are, you are cutting out early on your brushing habits. Set a timer the next time you brush and you may be surprised at the amount of time you actually hold your toothbrush every day.
We know that most people are in autopilot when it comes to brushing their teeth and their habits have long been engrained. However, keeping yourself in check with the proper technique, right products and recommended duration can benefit your smile to the fullest!
Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV, Gilreath Dental Associates