For some of us, brushing our teeth can be as mundane and routinely as every other daily practice like combing our hair or washing our face. We hardly give much thought to whether or not we are doing it “right”. In fact, brushing your teeth correctly actually involves proper technique.
How frequent you brush, how long you brush, the vigorousness and strokes of your brushing are all major influences on the effectiveness of your brushing.
It is recommended that you should brush your teeth for a minimum of two minutes day and night, using a soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head and a flexible neck. These toothbrushes avoid causing damage to your teeth and gums whilst still removing the plaque and debris from your teeth.
To begin, work systematically from the back of your mouth towards the front. Holding the toothbrush bristle at the gum line on a 45° angle, brush gently in circular motions. Avoid scrubbing too forcefully from side to side as people normally do. This is because you wouldn’t want to risk causing your gums to recede, or even damaging the tooth enamel. Pay careful attention to brush along the inner, outer and chewing surfaces, ensuring you tip the toothbrush so you can reach the inner front sections of the teeth, which tend to be overlooked.
If you find it a challenge to reach towards small corners of the mouth, consider purchasing an electric toothbrush
Besides that, while it may be unusual at first to clean your tongue by brushing it, doing so actually minimises the bacteria in your mouth and helps prevent bad breath. A simple push of the bristles on the tongue and a gentle scrape is all you need.
When you are done brushing, try to expel the toothpaste and don’t rinse with water. Leave some toothpaste on your teeth because it is a good method to give your pearly whites some extra lasting protection.
Lastly, while it may seem logical that the harder you brush the cleaner your teeth should be, be cautious that over exertion can ruin your gums and tooth enamel. Bristles on your toothbrush wearing out before the 3 month mark could be a sign that you’re brushing too forcefully and you should adjust your technique according to your dentist’s advice. It’s also a good practice to replace your brush, when either the bristles start to fray, or even every three months.