If someone asked you whether you know how to brush your teeth, you’d probably assume it was a silly question. It’s not complicated; brush twice a day, especially after meals. Don’t all adults know how to do that? However, while twice daily brushing is important, there are actually ways that you can improve your at-home dental care. Using the right toothbrush, the right toothpaste, and proper brushing techniques can more effectively clean your teeth and prevent dental decay. When you come in for your routine visits, your North Richland Hills dentist can provide further guidance in the most effective ways to care for your teeth.
The Importance of Proper Dental Care
Brushing your teeth is one of the most important things you can do to prevent bacteria, tartar, and plaque from building up in your mouth. These substances interact with sugars and starches to form corrosive acids. As the acids eat away at your dental enamel, they will form small white spots, which will eventually become cavities. Additionally, as bacteria accumulate on your teeth, they will gradually move below your gum line, causing gum disease. Thus, routine dental care can prevent decay, gum erosion, tooth loss, and jawbone recession.
The Best Ways to Brush Your Teeth
Brushing is not a simple as it may seem. Here are five tips to make sure you are getting the most from your dental care.
1. Use a soft-bristled brush.
Although a hard-bristled brush may seem more effective, the abrasive fibers could actually wear away at your enamel and irritate your soft gum tissue. Used properly, a soft-bristled brush is just as effective at removing bacteria and plaque.
2. Use the right strokes.
Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums. Then brush using gentle, short strokes across your entire tooth. Make sure to brush all areas of your teeth, including the backs and top chewing surfaces. You should also thoroughly brush your tongue. This will prevent a buildup of bacteria, which will lead to bad breath.
3. Replace your toothbrush regularly.
Although a hard-bristled brush, can harm your teeth and gums, an old, worn brush will be ineffective. For optimal dental health, you should replace your toothbrush every three to four months, or sooner if the bristles are starting to fray.
4. Use ADA-approved toothpaste.
When you choose toothpaste that has been approved by the American Dental Association®, you can rest assured that you are brushing with a safe and effective product. Non-approved toothpastes could contain unsafe levels of fluoride or abrasive products that could damage your dental enamel.
5. Wait 30 minutes after eating.
Like many patients, you may assume that the sooner you brush, the better it is for your oral health. Actually, you should rinse your mouth and wait about half an hour. When you brush too soon, you will rub bits of food, starch, sugar, and acids into your dental enamel.
ABOUT YOUR NORTH RICHLAND HILLS FAMILY DENTIST:
With over 25 years of professional experience, Dr. Steven M. Huffstutler and his caring team proudly provide exceptional preventive, cosmetic, and restorative dental treatment to patients and their families across Dallas/Ft. Worth, including North Richland Hills, Denton, the Mid-cities, Southlake, and all surrounding communities. We also have extensive experience helping patients find relief from painful TMJ disorders (various forms of jaw dysfunction). To schedule an appointment with Dr. Huffstutler, contact our office today by calling 817-577-1444.