Brushing Your Teeth
Why is brushing your teeth so important?
Brushing your teeth regularly helps remove food particles from teeth surfaces to keep them healthy and clean. If you don’t brush your teeth properly, food and plaque start to gather on your teeth surfaces. Gradually, this buildup calcifies and forms a substance known as tartar or calculus. Since tartar is very hard and sticky, it is impossible to remove from your teeth by yourself. Additionally, tartar harbors harmful bacteria which produce acids that destroy your teeth, gums and jawbone. As a result, if you’re not cleaning your teeth properly, you’re risking developing cavities, gum disease and infection.
What is the correct way to brush my teeth?
Our recommended brushing technique for properly cleaning your teeth is the Bass technique. To begin, hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against tooth surfaces. Place your toothbrush against each tooth surface and brush using gentle, circular strokes. Apply enough pressure to remove plaque and food particles but not so much that you damage your teeth. Once you’ve finished brushing each tooth surface, re-position the toothbrush on the next surface. Continue until you’ve covered your entire mouth and cleaned every tooth surface. For even a cleaner mouth, brush your tongue once you’re done with brushing your teeth.
How long should I brush my teeth for?
It’s important that you spend enough time brushing your teeth to thoroughly clean all teeth surfaces. Brushing quickly leaves plaque on your teeth and exposes you to cavities and gum disease. Ideally, you want to brush your teeth for at least two minutes, twice a day. Pay attention to clean all teeth surfaces, including the ones sitting against your tongue and in the back of your mouth. Keep in mind that if you eat lots of sugars and sodas, suffer from dry mouth or have other risk factors, you may need to brush your teeth even more.
Is an electric toothbrush better than a manual brush?
Both manual and electric toothbrushes can be very effective if you use them properly. The biggest advantage of using an electric toothbrush is that these toothbrushes perform the oscillation motion for you. This makes brushing your teeth easier and cuts down on your efforts. However, you still need to pay attention to cover each and ever tooth surface, brush for the recommended two minutes and apply the right amount of pressure.
If you prefer to use an electric toothbrush, we recommend Oral-B or Sonicare. If you choose to go with a manual toothbrush, use one that has soft bristles. Hard bristles are abrasive and can damage your teeth and gums over time. Regardless of the type of toothbrush which you use, be sure to switch out your toothbrush or brush-head every 3 to 4 months. Using an old toothbrush or brush-head for too long exposes your teeth to harmful bacteria. Plus, worn out toothbrush bristles become abrasive and damage your teeth and gums.
If you still have questions about brushing your teeth, we can help! Call us at (949) 481-2540 or book online to have us review your brushing techniques with you. Our dentist, Dr. Jazayeri, will access your brushing techniques to see if you’re brushing your teeth correctly. We will gladly offer additional advise on how to improve your brushing techniques and make recommendations when necessary.