You grew up watching your mother go through her spring cleaning ritual. She would pull all the furniture away from the walls to uncover whatever dust and particles were hidden behind them. You noticed how methodical she cleaned, mopping every inch of the kitchen floor and dusting off tables. One thing really caught your attention, though – the way she scrubbed with vigor and determination. You’ve never forgotten your mother’s efforts and have used them to drive your current work ethic, but you’re learning that the strategy of applying more elbow grease isn’t always the best choice, especially when cleaning your teeth. That’s why your dentist in Ephrata says there are right ways to brush. Learn more about them as you continue reading.
Why Does It Matter How You Brush Your Teeth?
The way you brush your teeth is of great importance because they are sensitive. The hard enamel surface can be damaged, and if it is, it will expose the softer, more sensitive dentin to varied temperatures and food particles, which can cause you pain.
Also, your brushing technique will determine whether you’re successful in cleaning your teeth. This is important because you want to know that your efforts are not in vain.
The Proper Way to Brush Your Teeth
For starters, proper brushing takes at least two minutes, using an extra-soft to soft toothbrush. Here are some the techniques to consider:
- Outside First – Start by cleaning the outer surface of your upper teeth, then move to the lower ones. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle against the gum line, as you gently sweep and roll the brush away.
- Inner Surface – Clean the inner surface of your teeth and then move to the lower ones. Use short back-and-forth strokes.
- Chewing Surfaces – Next, move to the chewing surfaces using the same short back-and-forth strokes.
- Your Tongue – Tiny bacteria and food particles can get trapped on your tongue and contribute to bad breath. So, make sure to brush it with gentle strokes to remove the undesirables.
- Cheek and Roof – Finally, don’t forget to brush your cheeks and roof of your mouth. These are also hiding places of bacteria.
When to Replace Your Toothbrush
You should replace your toothbrush every three months or earlier, if there are signs of wear. It’s especially important to replace it after an illness because germs can collect in the bristles, and possibly cause reinfection.
By brushing your teeth properly at least twice a day, along with flossing, you are building a mighty defense against the harmful bacteria that cause tooth decay and other oral issues. Work with your dentist to ensure that you stay protected by scheduling a visit at least every six months for cleanings and examinations.
About the Author
After graduating from Penn State, Dr. Sean Moriarty went on to attend dental school at Temple University, where he earned his Doctorate in Dental Medicine. Committed to life-long learning, he has completed hundreds of hours of continuing education. Dr. Moriarty practices at Ephrata Family Dentistry and can be reached for more information through his website.