You may believe scrubbing your tooth surfaces for thirty seconds with an approved fluoride toothpaste is sufficient to keep your teeth sparkling clean and healthy, but your dentist would tell you otherwise. Many adults and children hurry the brushing process, leading to problems with cavities and gum disease.
Brushing for a full two minutes twice a day is best, using careful technique. This blog breaks down brushing your teeth, explaining why each step is crucial to keeping your smile healthy and bright.
How to Properly Brush Your Teeth
Step 1: Choose the Right Toothpaste and Toothbrush
Choosing the right equipment is one of the most important aspects of brushing your teeth. Use a soft toothbrush since medium and above can irritate your gums and lead to premature gum recession. Use an ADA-approved fluoride toothpaste for patients aged six months and older. For babies and toddlers, use a small smear of toothpaste the size of a single rice grain.
Step 2: Brush at a 45-degree Angle
Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and teeth. This technique will enable you to reach the tooth and gum most efficiently.
Step 3: Brush in Circles
It would be best to move the toothbrush in small circles when brushing your teeth. Brush both the teeth and gums gently but thoroughly.
Step 4: Spend 30 Seconds on Each Section
Divide your mouth into sections: upper left, upper right, lower left, and lower right. Spend equal time on each section, brushing both front and back and ensuring you reach the gums. Gently brushing your tongue can also remove germs that cause bad breath.
Step 5: Skip the Rinse
If you rinse immediately, you will wash away beneficial fluoride. Avoid eating, drinking, and rinsing for at least 30 minutes after brushing your teeth.
Frequently Asked Questions About Home Oral Care
Is an electric toothbrush more effective than a manual toothbrush?
An electric toothbrush may be more efficient but is not necessarily better than a manual toothbrush. The key is brushing for two minutes and covering all areas of your teeth. Set a timer on your watch or phone if you find it helpful. Rushing through your tooth brushing routine with an electric toothbrush is no more effective than rushing with a manual toothbrush. Take your time and ensure you have sparkling, clean teeth.
Do I have to floss my teeth every day?
In addition to proper brushing, a solid flossing routine is a must to improve your oral health. Dentists sometimes quote the saying that you should only floss the teeth you want to keep, but this saying has a strong basis. Flossing removes food particles and plaque that simply brushing cannot catch, lowering your chance of developing tooth decay and gum disease.
Call Wilson Park Dental
To make an appointment for a routine cleaning or any other necessary dental work, please call our Rapid City, SD, office at 605-343-9352. We can schedule an appointment with Dr. Haave to ensure your oral care routine is on track.