Tooth Brushing Mistakes You Make Every Day
By Dr. Laurence H. Stone, D.D.S.
This blog offers great advice for keeping your mouth healthy. For example, it gives advice on how one can avoid common teeth-damaging habits and what treatment one should get for dry mouth, tooth sensitivity, and many other dental needs.
1.You don’t clean at the right time of day
If you were to only brush once a day when would be the best time? Night time of course! When you are sleeping is the longest period of the day when you are not eating, and therefore, feeding the bacteria that cause tooth decay and gum disease. As I speak to people every day, another mistake I encounter is that many people brush upon arising in the morning before breakfast. It’s OK to freshen your breath in the morning but remember to brush after you eat. After all, you wouldn’t take a shower before exercising at the gym and not after!
2.You use the wrong brush
Anything other than a soft brush has the potential to harm not only the teeth but the gums as well. Plaque is soft and can be removed easily. Remember, it’s not how hard you brush, it’s how thoroughly you brush. Always use a soft brush.
3.You ignore the rest of your mouth
Your tongue harbors food and bacteria in the tiny crevices between the “papillae” on the back of the tongue. Use a tongue scraper or your brush to get rid of these harmful bacteria. (It can improve your breath as well!).
4.Not using proper technique
Believe it or not, I was in dental practice for 2 years before I learned how to floss properly! Many people never really learned how to brush properly either and many dental professionals are guilty of paying “lip service” to proper oral hygiene without actually showing their patients how to do it properly. Always check with us if you have any doubts. Never “scrub” and don’t apply too much pressure.
5.Not brushing long enough
The American Dental Association recommends brushing twice a day for 2 minutes each time. Two minutes is a long time if you’re watching the clock! That’s one reason why I’m a fan of electric toothbrushes is that they operate on a timer for 2 minutes so you don’t have to think about it.
6.You don’t replace your brush
You should probably replace your brush every 3-4 months, more frequently if the bristles become worn. Worn bristles won’t effectively remove plaque and bacteria. And don’t forget to replace your brush immediately if you’ve been sick! Bacteria and viruses from an illness can reside in the bristles and potentially re-infect you.
This entry was posted in Dental Procedures, Oral Health and tagged Dr. Larry Stone.
About Laurence H. Stone, D.D.S.
Dr. Larry Stone’s love of dentistry, strong skill set and accreditations by national dental associations instil confidence in general and cosmetic dentistry patients alike. Dr. Stone is a 1973 graduate of Temple University Dental School, where he was a member of the Oral Surgery Honor Society. Before opening his own practice, Dr. Stone served as a Senior Assistant Dental Surgeon with the U.S. Public Health Service. He has also been a Clinical Instructor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine and is currently on staff at Doylestown Hospital.