Brushing Your Teeth
For most people, brushing is a standard part of your daily dental routine. The Australian Dental Association (ADA) currently recommends that you brush your teeth at minimum two times each day – preferably morning and night.
When you brush, your toothbrush should be tilted at a 45 degree angle to your gum line. As you brush, be sure to remove debris from every surface of the teeth – including the backs of the teeth, near the gum line, and on chewing surfaces. It is also important to brush your tongue, as bacteria can accumulate there and cause bad breath, and to use toothpaste that contains fluoride – brushing and spitting the excess without rinsing.
The ADA recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush. If using an electric toothbrush use a slow motion following the contours of the teeth and gums. The ADA also recommends replacing your toothbrush about every three months or whenever the bristles become frayed.
The benefits of proper tooth brushing techniques may be experienced immediately, but they are more noticeable long-term. Over time, brushing too hard or not brushing enough can produce oral health complications that cannot be reversed and require special treatment. By adopting proper brushing habits, you could avoid expensive restorative dental bills in the future.
You may need to change your brushing habits if you are experiencing signs of poor oral hygiene. Common symptoms include bleeding or reddened gums, excessive plaque build-up, decaying teeth and receding gum lines. To find out if you are brushing correctly or if you need to change your brushing habits, make an appointment with your dentist for a full consultation.