Worldwide, oral disease affects the lives of 3.9 billion people. That makes it the most prevalent health condition in the world, according to a Global Burden of Disease study. Conditions like tooth decay and gum disease affect children and adults alike, and tooth brushing is a vital way of promoting good dental health. But, not everyone brushes their teeth properly.
Residents in the Mamaroneck, New York, and Stamford, Connecticut, who need advice on the best ways to care for their teeth can count on the years of experience provided by Dr. Gennadiy Kravets and All Bright Dental.
Here are some tooth brushing habits to avoid:
1. Using the wrong brush
Getting a toothbrush that reaches all areas of the teeth and gums is essential. Whether it’s a manual or electric, reach is very important. Not being able to clean everywhere means the chances of tooth decay and other dental problems are greater.
Just as important is the bristle of the brush. Soft bristles are better for teeth because they are flexible enough to get in all the right places and don’t irritate gums in the process. Hard bristles can actually do more harm than good.
2. Not brushing correctly
Many people either don’t brush properly, brush too hard, or both. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing teeth at a 45° angle in a circular motion on the outside and inside surfaces. On chewing surfaces, a light back and forth motion is best.
In addition, brushing harder isn’t better for teeth; it only irritates teeth and gums more. Plaque is a soft substance and can be removed with a steady massaging pressure of the toothbrush. Don’t scrub teeth like grout in the shower.
3. Not flossing
Brushing alone can’t get between teeth effectively. Left untouched, bacteria in between teeth build up, leading to tooth decay and gum disease. Flossing is the most effective way to clean the space between teeth. It also helps to remove particles from the gumline. So before brushing, don’t forget to floss.
4. Not brushing long enough
The importance of brushing is often underestimated, so many people think just a quick session in front of the bathroom mirror is enough to protect teeth. But doing it properly takes two minutes twice a day, no less. Brushing correctly and for the appropriate amount of time can help eliminate plaque and food build up.
5. Forgetting the gums and tongue
One of the common places bacteria and particles build up is on the gum line, where the teeth meet the gums. Brushing just under the gum with a soft bristle is just as important as brushing the rest of the tooth and flossing.
Brushing the tongue is also important. Preventing bacteria build up on the tongue helps to prevent bad breath. Many toothbrushes have a tongue cleaner on the other side of the brush.
Following these tips promote healthier teeth and better overall health. For help in providing the best care for your teeth, make an appointment with Dr. Kravets and All Bright Dental today.