In today’s post, our Fort St. John dentists explain how you can improve your toothbrushing routine and promote better oral hygiene, based on some of the most common mistakes we see our patients make with this daily task.
Choose the Right Toothbrush for Your Smile
Do you prefer a manual or electric toothbrush? No matter which you choose, make sure you can easily reach all of your mouth’s areas with it - even those hard-to-reach spaces at the back - and that it will be easy and comfortable to use.
How does the toothbrush fit in your hand? If the handle is too bulky or long, this may prevent you from brushing as thoroughly as required - and make brushing awkward, which will make this task more difficult. That’s important because thorough brushing between regularly scheduled dental cleanings at your dentist’s office is essential to maintaining a bright, healthy smile).
The next area you’ll want to look at is the bristles. For most people, a soft-bristled toothbrush will be best, especially if you’ve experienced enamel erosion or have sensitive teeth. Brushes with hard bristles can feel too rough on your mouth’s sensitive areas.
Discuss your specific circumstances with your dentist, and ask if you need to take special care when looking at brush bristles. Which types of bristles would work best on your teeth?
Our dentists at Fort St. John Dental Clinic always advise our patients to look for a toothbrush with a smaller head, for a few reasons. With a smaller head on your brush, you will be able to more easily reach the corners of your mouth that are sometimes too difficult to reach with larger heads, such as the teeth at the very back of your mouth and the backs of your lower front teeth.
Keep in mind that brushing harder does not always mean that you’re brushing better. When it comes to brushing your teeth, aim to massage your teeth and gums - not to vigorously brush away any plaque.
It’s best to perform this ritual when you’re feeling calm. Take a deep breath before starting to brush. Brush gently, since your teeth and gums may be sensitive - be kind to your smile!
Brush for 2 Full Minutes
To achieve optimal oral health (and the best possible results), brush for a full 2 minutes, twice per day. If you use a timer, you may be surprised that you were often cutting your brushing time short previously.
You might consider thinking of your mouth as four quarters. Take about 30 seconds to focus on brushing each of those individual quadrants. Clean all areas of each section thoroughly before you move to the next quadrant. Once your 2 minutes are up, finish off your toothbrush time with a thorough flossing session - then you’re done!