It is not uncommon for people to overlook their oral health, forgetting that this is a crucial aspect of their overall physical wellbeing. They might skip brushing their teeth for a couple of evenings (nobody will be around then to smell your breath, so what’s the point, right?) and forgo flossing altogether. However, these seemingly innocuous things actually have an insidious effect. Once plaque has lingered in your mouth for more than 48 hours, it can transform into tartar and cause further complications down the line.
Therefore, we strongly advise against being negligent regarding your dental hygiene. But what exactly constitutes good oral health? How exactly does one achieve this standard, protecting their smile for the future? That’s precisely what we are going to be discussing in our article today. Keep reading to find out further information.
How to Clean Your Teeth
First and foremost, let’s talk about cleaning your teeth and what is considered to be a good practice. After all, this is the simplest but most important step to maintaining your oral health.
For starters, consistency is key. You should always brush your teeth twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. The reason why this is important is that it helps to remove the plaque and germs that have accumulated in your mouth throughout the course of the day. If bacteria are allowed to linger around, they could cause a nasty infection.
Meanwhile, it is important to remove plaque as soon as possible because this sticky substance can harden into tartar within 48 hours. Tartar can erode your teeth and cause bad breath, before eventually leading to things like cavities, infections, and decay. Brushing your teeth regularly should dislodge plaque before it has time to establish itself in your mouth.
Technique For Brushing Your Teeth Properly
Having a good technique is also essential for brushing your teeth properly. Though you might think that giving your mouth a vigorous scrub is effective at removing plaque, you could actually be doing more harm than good. Instead, we suggest being slow but thorough when brushing your teeth. This should stop the toothbrush bristles from scraping and cutting your gums (which could make them vulnerable to infection).
Furthermore, you should brush your teeth with circular motions at a 45-degree angle. Circular motions are far better at dislodging food that has become trapped between teeth. Meanwhile, this angle means that you can carefully target any plaque that is trying to accumulate around the sensitive gums.
For the chewing surfaces on your teeth, you should use a simple back-and-forth motion. It’s also very important to brush the insides of your teeth. People tend to focus on what they can see – i.e. the outward-facing surfaces of their teeth. However, the insides of your teeth are just as liable to plaque and infection. So, be sure to give these a thorough cleanse each time you brush, too.
Toothpaste Size and Fluoride
Let’s talk about toothpaste now. When brushing your teeth, you should be using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. If you’re anything like most people, you probably apply a generous amount. However, this is entirely unnecessary and can sometimes be bad for children.
Regarding the toothpaste brand that you choose, it doesn’t really matter, so long as the product has plenty of fluorides. This special chemical ingredient is what is responsible for protecting your teeth from plaque. Fluoride is also why you should spit and not rinse after brushing. It forms a protective layer over your teeth, helping to keep the enamel strong and make them resistant to decay.
With the right toothpaste and brushing technique, you should be well on your way to maintaining your oral health. People can benefit from using an electric toothbrush with a circular head, so this might be worth investing in.
How to Floss Your Teeth
Moving on, we are now going to be talking about flossing. For whatever reason, most people neglect to floss their teeth. They find the process laborious and unnecessary, leading them to cut it out of their oral hygiene. As any good dentist will tell you, this is a bad idea and can result in some serious complications further down the line. Let’s dive a little deeper into it.
Flossing is using a fine cord of filament to dislodge food and plaque from between the teeth where a toothbrush can’t reach. This helps to prevent gum diseases and the build-up of tartar. You are supposed to use dental floss to do so. However, interdental brushes can also do a thorough job. People should not use toothpicks, though, as these can break off in the mouth and splinter in the gums. Dentists also say that mouthwash cannot replace flossing. Mouthwashes are good for providing a protective layer of fluoride and fresh breath, but they are unable to dislodge or dissolve anything between the teeth.
Regarding the practice of flossing your teeth, there are a few things to note. For starters, we should floss at least once per day. This helps to remove plaque before it has the chance to calcify into tartar. You should focus on flossing one tooth at a time, gently easing the floss between your teeth, and using a rubbing motion. Never force the floss into your gums because this can cut or bruise the tender tissue. Move the floss from the top of your tooth to the base of your tooth, making sure to curve around. After this point, you should be able to remove the dental filament and move it onto the next tooth. Once you have finished flossing, be sure to rinse your mouth. You don’t want any of the dislodged plaque and food hanging around, after all.
When you first begin to properly floss, your teeth and gums might take a little while to adjust. For example, they might bleed or feel tender afterward. This should go away after 2 or 3 weeks. However, if the problem persists, then you might have a problem.
For instance, you could have developed gum disease or a tooth infection. As such, you should book an appointment with your dentist for a check-up. If you are struggling with flossing, as the filament won’t go between your teeth, you might want to look into straightening your teeth with ALIGNERCO. Crowded teeth aren’t a problem, but they can make it more difficult to floss.
Companies like ALIGNERCO offer clear aligners which can help to space your teeth more evenly – thereby making it easier to use dental floss and prevent plaque from building up in the little nooks that your toothbrush can’t reach.
By flossing your teeth regularly with the right technique and tools, you should be on track to good oral health.
Book an Appointment with Your Dentist
Finally, to conclude this guide, we suggest booking an appointment with your dentist. You should see an oral healthcare expert at least twice per year – not just whenever you have a problem with your gums or teeth. Your dentist will be able to identify any problems and offer solutions, such as fillings or professional cleaning. Furthermore, they can nip an issue in the bud before it has time to develop into something worse, like tooth decay. This is the ultimate way to maintain a good standard of oral health.