We often talk about the importance of maintaining a good oral hygiene routine to ensure that your mouth is happy and healthy, but it’s important not to take the details of this routine for granted. You are already putting in the time and effort, so here are some tips to make sure you are making the most of it.
Today’s market has a plethora of toothpaste formulas to choose from. Whether you’re looking for something with a specific taste, whitening agents or to help sensitivity, rest assured that most of the products available are effective in fighting cavities. Make sure you choose a toothpaste that also contains fluoride (not all of them do) because this will help prevent enamel decay.
Thoroughly brush your teeth at least twice a day for about two minutes at a time. Make sure that one of these times is at night before bed and after your last evening meal or snack. Follow these techniques for best brushing results:
- The bristles of the toothbrush should be at a 45-degree angle against the gums
- Move the brush back and forth in short strokes
- Make sure to brush the outer, inner and chewing surface of all teeth
- Brush your tongue to remove bacteria
- If using a manual brush, look for one with a small head and medium or soft bristles
- If you are using an electric brush, choose one with an oscillating or rotating head
Your brushing technique is more important than the type of brush you use, but in some cases a specific type of brush may suit your needs and the shape of your teeth better than another. We’d be happy to talk with you about specific features that may be of personal benefit to you.
It’s important to floss once a day, but the specific timing is up to you. So work it into a part of your day when you can consistently take time to do a good job. Remember that flossing isn’t simply about removing stubborn food debris but is important for removing plaque between teeth where a brush can’t reach. Proper technique includes:
- Using a floss length of about 18 inches
- Winding the floss around a finger on each hand and hold it tightly between your thumbs and pointing fingers
- Using a gentle rubbing motion slowly moving up and down
- Curving the floss in a c shape around the tooth and gently sliding it between the gum and tooth
Some people like using a mouth rinse in addition to brushing and flossing. Antimicrobial mouth rinses can help reduce risk of gingivitis and fluoride rinses can help prevent decay. But not all rinses are right for every need so it’s best to talk with us before incorporating a rinse into your daily routine. We can advise on the type of rinse that would be best for you.
Good oral hygiene contributes to a happy healthy mouth. Taking care of your teeth and gums on a daily basis will make a huge impact on your oral health. In addition, schedule a professional cleaning and check-up twice a year. At these appointments, our hygienists can instruct you on your brushing and flossing technique to make sure you are getting the most out of your time. They will also point out any problem areas that may require extra attention. Together we can keep your mouth at it’s best.