Taking care of your teeth involves a series of habits that we feel sure you intend to do, but even with the best intentions the technique, frequency or tools can be less than perfect. We see some of these mistakes over and over again and thought we would share them here so that you can make sure that your oral health care is the best that it can be. Here are the top five.
Brushing Too Hard
We are taught as children that the way to get the best cleaning results is to scrub hard, but this urge to forcefully clean our teeth can be harmful to them. Brushing aggressively can damage both your gums and tooth enamel and often leads to gum recession. This recession can make teeth sensitive and more susceptible to cavities, bone loss and even tooth loss.
Keep in mind that when you brush your teeth regularly you will simply need to brush or wipe away new debris or food particles and this can be done gently. You can enjoy a fresh, clean smile while protecting both your teeth and your gums.
Brushing Too Fast
It is generally recommended that you brush your teeth for 2 minutes twice a day. If you are use to racing through your mouth with the brush this may feel like a long time, but if you brush faster, your technique will likely suffer. We often find that people who think they are brushing thoroughly are missing the same area or two every time. This means those areas don't get brushed at all and have a high risk for cavities, gum disease and other dental problems.
Instead, take the time needed to ensure you clean all surfaces of your teeth thoroughly. You will be glad you did.
Using the Wrong Toothbrush
The type of bristles on the toothbrush you use is very important. Hard or medium bristles can damage your gums and tooth enamel much like scrubbing hard does. We recommend you choose toothbrushes with soft or extra-soft bristles for the best results. Even better, get an electric toothbrush if you can as they are proven to be more effective.
Not Cleaning Between Your Teeth
If you could see what we see.... Food that is stuck between your teeth is pretty gross, especially if that area never gets cleaned. It can lead to infections, periodontal disease, cavities, bad breath, tooth loss and other serious and expensive dental issues.
There are two easy ways to clean in these tough to reach areas and they only take a couple minutes a day. The first option is flossing. We don't understand why it gets such a bad rap when it is easy and can prevent so many problems. But, if you just know you won't do it, go to the second option, an oral irrigator. These devices use water to flush out the areas between your teeth and remove any particles there. They may take a bit of practice and you may get wet the first time you try, but they are well worth it. You can make it even easier by getting one that you can use in the shower.
Not Getting Regular Checkups and Cleanings
Your dental hygienist does more than clean your teeth. She removes the tough deposits you can't remove at home where bacteria live. She is also restoring balance to your oral microbiome that is not only important for your oral health, but your overall health as well.
Dental x-rays and checkups help us catch things early while they are inexpensive and easy to fix. It's important to be informed about the health of your mouth and it will also help you plan treatment to maximize insurance coverage and protect your smile. If you have not had a cleaning and check up in the last 6 months, we encourage you to give us a call.
It's important to be proactive and effective with your dental care and we are here to help. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, we would love to talk to you. You can reach us at the number below.
KN Dentistry - Orange, CA - (714) 633-2562