If you are like most people, you have probably wondered if you were brushing your teeth enough. You may have even felt anxiety when you accidentally skipped a session because you were running late for work (sorry for your co-workers), or maybe you fell asleep early and didn’t get a chance to do your oral health routine. While this can cause stress, there may be another question we should be asking, “Can you brush your teeth too much?”
It may not be how often you brush your teeth, but how you brush your teeth. The ‘how’ starts with the tools you use.
The Right Toothbrush
Improper care of your toothbrush, the wrong bristles, and even how often you buy a new one can all affect the health of your teeth. Avoid this by using these best practices:
- Splurge. Toothbrushes are very economical, so buying a dentist-recommended one is an easy way to improve your dental routine.
- Choose soft. Make sure when you buy one that you choose one with soft bristles. Hard, and even medium, bristles can damage your teeth and cause gum sensitivity.
- Throw it out. Even on the best toothbrush, bristles will fray and become jagged over time. These rough edges can cause extensive damage to your enamel. Dentists recommend getting a new toothbrush every 3-4 months, or more often if you have recently gotten over a virus.
- Store it properly. Toothbrushes can be a harbor for bacteria if not properly stored. To ensure bacteria doesn’t find a cozy home in yours, place your toothbrush upright in a container with open-airflow.
The Brushing Technique
If you have ever wondered if there is a correct brushing technique when brushing your teeth, the answer is yes. Dentists recommend brushing at a 45-degree angle, starting at the gumline. You can also brush gently in small circles. The key is to make sure the entire surface of the tooth is touched. When finished, floss daily to get in between the teeth where the toothbrush cannot reach.
Every Mouth is Different
Every mouth is different. In general, dental professionals recommend brushing two times each day for two minutes each time. Your routine can be different depending on your dental needs (such as kids with orthodontic devices). Only you and your dentist can establish what is suitable for your overall oral health.
If you are unsure about your brushing method, or it has been a while since you have scheduled an appointment with a dentist, please do not hesitate to reach out to one of our excellent dentists at Greeley Dental Health.