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Are You Brushing Your Teeth All Wrong?

Are You Brushing Your Teeth All Wrong?

You’ve been brushing your teeth for as long as you can remember. It’s a task you feel pretty confident in performing. What if you were to find out that you’ve been doing it all wrong?

Proper tooth brushing helps get rid of bacteria in your mouth that contributes to decay and gum disease. Consider these brushing recommendations, and ask yourself if you can make some changes to improve your oral health. 

And, even if you brush and floss pristinely twice per day, remember that you still need regular dental visits to keep your mouth looking and feeling its best. South Plains Rural Health Services, Inc. offers dentistry services like regular cleanings and checkups at their offices in Levelland, Lamesa, and Big Spring, Texas. 

Here are some tips to revise your brushing technique and optimize your oral health.

Don’t rely on brushing your teeth alone

So you have stupendous brushing skills. Great! But, know that brushing your teeth only gets rid of about 50% of the germs in  your mouth. Don’t forget to brush your tongue, cheeks, and the floor of your mouth and rinse with a quality mouthwash. Plus, floss once or twice daily to get the bacteria that wedges between your teeth. 

Use the right brush

A soft-bristled brush is the best bet when it comes to regular at-home brushing. This type of brush is gentler on your teeth and gums. We can recommend the best choices -- don’t just go by color or cool design. Change your brush every three to four months, too, especially if you notice fraying or matting of the bristles. 

For the absolute, most thorough brushing job, convert to a power toothbrush. These are more affordable and available than ever and worth the few extra dollars. They are more effective in reaching the crevices that are almost impossible to get at with a handheld brush. 

Go for circular strokes at a 45-degree angle

Aim your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle as you brush your teeth. This gets at your gum line as well as the enamel -- helping ward off gum infections and disease. 

Also, when brushing, use short, circular strokes rather than sharp right-left action. Think of giving your teeth a soft massage rather than a harsh scrub. 

Brush for at least two minutes

It’s common to take a few swipes with your brush and call it done. You should spend two minutes, two times per day, brushing your teeth. Set a timer on your phone, use an old-fashioned hourglass, or play a song to keep you on track. 

Spend those two minutes going systematically throughout your mouth. Start in one of the four quadrants, and aim to hit each tooth and gum surface before moving on to the next. This optimizes your brushing experience. 

Use a moderate amount of toothpaste

Instead of slathering a hefty wedge of toothpaste on your brush, go for a modest, pea-sized amount. Any extra is simply wasted. You don’t want to be swallowing all that excess minty paste.

Implement these tips at home for you and your family so that your next dental visit at South Plains Rural Health Services, Inc. is a breeze. Good at-home hygiene greatly reduces incidences of cavities, gum disease, and progressive decay. Call the nearest location today, or use the online tool to set up an appointment for a dental checkup.  

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