We all have one set of teeth, so it’s quite important to look after them.
We often neglect oral hygiene and suffer from tooth decay and other problems as a result, yet avoiding them is very simple. Well, at least in theory. Basically, all you have to do is keep your teeth clean and shiny.
While brushing your teeth, focus on quality, not quantity
How often should you be brushing your teeth?
Well, ideally after every meal, but we know you’re probably too busy to do that, right?
We all lack the time and the determination; so we mostly brush our teeth in the morning and before sleep which is not a bad thing necessarily.
Even dentists will tell you that brushing your teeth several times a day doesn’t make them clean. What matters is the right technique, the quality not quantity.
If you’re not one of the perfectionists in brushing teeth after every meal, you should at least brush them properly in the morning and in the evening. What matters especially is, what you do before you go to sleep. Throughout the day, tiny pieces of what we eat and drink stick to our teeth.
When we sleep, salivary glands produce less of the saliva which can remove them and we also do not naturally clean our teeth with our lips and tongue either. This means the enamel is very vulnerable. During the day, we recommend washing your mouth with water after every meal and a sweet or sour drink.
While brushing your teeth, it’s not the time that matters but the technique.
Generally, teeth should be brushed for at least three minutes, but this is just a rough estimate which may differ individually. It is far more important to have a system and make sure all surfaces are brushed properly. When doing that, you shouldn’t brush your teeth horizontally and move across them, but rather move up and down vertically in small circles. Don’t push the brush too strongly. We’ll tell you more about how to do it at our clinic.
Don’t underestimate the toothbrush you choose
While choosing your right Toothbrush, focus on the following:
- The brush should have a short head, ideally about 2 centimeters long with thick straight brushes. This is how you’ll be able to access the more difficult parts.
- The brushes shouldn’t be all too sharp but a bit round at the end. This helps avoid damage to the enamel.
- Always go for the soft or very soft brushes which don’t harm the enamel and gums.
- More often than not, all those exotic handle shapes are a marketing thing. Upon purchase, focus on the brush being firm and not too flexible.
Among the best toothbrushes recommended by dentist and dental hygienists are the Curaprox, Meridol and Purodent brands.
Don’t forget to change your brush once in a while, ideally every two months, even if it still appears to be fine. When you brush your teeth, the fine ends of the brushes do get used up and can damage your tooth enamel.
Don’t underestimate the Power of other Dental Tools:
The tiny bits of food are most likely to get stuck in interdental spaces. They decompose there, weaken the enamel and lead to tooth decay. The thing is, you can’t brush them with a regular brush and it is necessary to use other dental tools, such as dental thread and interdental brush.
When it comes to brushing your teeth, dental thread plays a crucial role and using it should be a firm part of your oral hygiene. When using it, follow a few simple rules to avoid gum damage. We’ll explain and show you how to use it at Doctor Martin’s Clinic.
The interdental brush is another important tool. It has a similar role to the dental thread but is more effective and considerate to your teeth. When choosing it, talk to your dentist who will help you choose the right kind.
Use Chewing Gum and Mouthwash:
Mouthwash is a useful supplement to your oral hygiene.
It removes plaque and tartar from your teeth and also destroys the bacteria that cause gum diseases and foul breath. Chewing gum can help you to fight with same, too. The good thing is you can carry it with you at all times and use it when you can’t wash your teeth. It brushes the teeth mechanically and helps produce saliva which neutralises acids and also serves as prevention from bacteria attacking tooth enamel and creating tartar.
It is important to say that for the chewing gum, you should always go for the sugar-free option. If you only have a gum that contains sugar, chew it for at least 10-15 minutes. This is when all the sugar is gone.
You must visit your Dental Hygienist:
The best way to prevent tooth decay and other diseases is to regularly visit your dental hygienist. He or she will remove tartar, plaque, and pigment caused by drinking coffee or tea and smoking. Upon your visit, tooth polishing and fluoridation will be performed and you’ll get some useful tips on how to perform oral hygiene and what tools you need. At our clinic, dental hygiene consists of the following:
- Tartar removal using the ultrasound Piezon machine
- Airflow – sand-bursting and thorough pigment and mineralised tartar removal using a special “powder”
- Cleaning of interdental spaces and instruction on interdental brush use
- Manual cleaning of interdental spaces using a scraper
- Tooth fluoridation
- Proper home tooth care instruction