Brushing the teeth is very important in the prevention of gum disease, plaque and tooth decay. Teeth should be brushed twice a day to remove bits of food left between them. Many people think that brushing the teeth is very simple. Some strokes over here and another over there. The fact is; there is a proper way even in brushing the teeth. Brushing too light can leave bacteria that cause plaque, gum disease and bad breath. Brushing too hard also has consequences because it can damage our teeth. It scrapes away the protective enamel which makes our teeth strong.
The type of tooth brush we use is also important. For the removal of plaque and debris in between teeth, we should use a soft bristled brush with small heads to reach all areas of the mouth. A toothbrush should be changed every three months or when it shows signs of wear, whichever comes first. It should also be change or replaced after a cold because germs can accumulate or be trapped in the bristles which can lead to infection again. There are two kinds of toothbrush in the market today, the manual and the electric toothbrush.
There are also different kinds of toothpaste for different conditions of the teeth. There are toothpastes designed for cavities, gingivitis, tartar, teeth with stains and sensitive teeth. A dentist should be consulted for the right kind of toothpaste to be used.
Steps in brushing the teeth:
1. Rinse toothbrush - The toothbrush should be rinsed before using. This is done so that germs that accumulated since the last use can be removed.
2. Put toothpaste - Put a pea sized blob of toothpaste on the tooth brush for adults and just a smear for children.
3. Brushing the teeth - The toothbrush should be slightly angled to the gums. Brush the teeth in small circular movements across the entire teeth making sure that the front and back are covered. Again, do not apply too much pressure on the toothbrush because it can damage the gums and scrape off some protective enamel. To clean the back part of the front teeth, use an up and down movement using the top of the brush. It is also important to thoroughly clean the back part of the teeth.
4. Brush the tongue - Brushing the tongue is also important because bacteria can also accumulate here that cause bad breath.
5. Spit out the toothpaste - After brushing, spit out the toothpaste. If you can do away with rinsing don't rinse, it is better to leave the residue of the toothpaste on the teeth to give added protection.
6. Floss and mouthwash - Use floss once a day to be sure that there is nothing left in between the teeth. Also use a mouthwash for added protection.
Even if brushing is done properly, a dentist should also be consulted at least twice a year.