Basic Dental Care Brushing

It may be tempting to skip brushing once in a while, especially when you’re too tired to do anything but lie down when you get home. As such dental care habits are little mundane chores. But oral health and hygiene is no small matter. Practice proper oral health care and know when to report to your dentist.

Daily Dental Care Tips

Proper brushing

Brush your teeth at least twice daily. Take your time, and pay attention to brushing each tooth thoroughly. It is easy to accidentally skip some teeth when rushing through this routine.

Use a good soft-bristled toothbrush with fluoride toothpaste. Some people might prefer battery-operated toothbrushes, particularly those who have difficulty manipulating the toothbrush, due to conditions such as arthritis, for instance.

It is not the amount of toothpaste you use that is essential but rather your brushing technique. Use short back-and forth motions while holding your toothbrush with the bristles slightly angled against the teeth. All surfaces of your teeth should be brushed, so don’t forget the chewing surfaces (tops) and the insides of your teeth.

Brush the tongue as well.  Brushing too vigorously or harshly however, can irritate your gums.

Replace your toothbrush every three to four months or sooner if the bristles become frayed.

Dental floss and accessories

The toothbrush can’t get in between teeth or at the bottom near the gum line, so floss daily.

Don’t skimp. Break off about 18 inches of dental floss and wind most of it around the middle finger on one hand, and the rest around the middle finger on the other hand – leaving about 1 inch to floss your first tooth.

Taking it one tooth at a time, gently pull the floss from the gum line to the top of the tooth to scrape off plaque using your thumbs and forefingers. Rub the floss against all sides of the tooth, and then unwind to a fresh portion of floss as you move to the next tooth.

If you have trouble getting floss through your teeth, a waxed variety is available. Other accessories are available as well, such as floss holders or interdental cleaners, which resemble a dental pick designed to clean between the teeth.

Additionally, there is a wide variety of mouth rinses, which kill germs and reduce plaque, not to mention residual odors.

Avoid toothpicks and other objects that can injure your gums. An alternative would be an oral irrigator, which is a device that you can use to spray a small jet of water at your teeth. However, remember that this not a substitute for regular brushing and flossing.

Regular dental check-ups

Maintain regular appointments with your dentist – once or twice a year, for dental cleaning and check-up. In the meantime, don’t wait until your next appointment to inform your dentist about oral problems like the following

  • Red, tender or swollen gums
  • Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
  • Gums that begin pulling away from your teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Changes in the way your top and bottom teeth align with each other
  • Unusual sensitivity to hot and cold

Proper care and hygiene, coupled with early detection and treatment of oral health problems will guarantee a lifetime of strong teeth and a healthy mouth.