Tips for brushing and flossing your teeth
When it comes to brushing and flossing your teeth, most people know they should brush twice per day and floss daily. However, many people have never been taught the proper technique, leaving them susceptible to the buildup of disease-causing plaque and tartar. Read on for tips from the Life Smiles Dental Care team in Phoenix, Arizona, on how to make the most out of your daily brushing and flossing routine.
Use the right tools
When it comes to toothbrushes and toothpaste, not all are created equal! Look for a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste with the ADA seal of approval. Many patients ask us whether a manual or electric toothbrush is better, and the answer is that it depends on your personal preference and technique! Some patients prefer a manual toothbrush due to cost or other factors, whereas others can benefit from the thorough cleaning abilities of an electric toothbrush. The key is to find a toothbrush that enables you to reach all surfaces of your teeth easily and effectively.
When it comes to flossing, there are many different types of interdental cleaners, such as single-use flossers, water flossers, and traditional string floss. Like toothbrushes, the most important factor in determining which one you are most likely to use and stick to a daily flossing routine.
Replace your toothbrush regularly
As toothbrushes begin to wear down, typically every three months, the bristles become less effective at removing surface debris and plaque. Whether you are using a manual or electric toothbrush, be sure to replace the toothbrush or head regularly.
Check your brushing technique
When you are brushing your teeth, it is best to follow these guidelines to ensure you have thoroughly cleaned your teeth of all food and plaque:
- Place the brush at a 45-degree angle from the gum line, using short circular motions as well as back-and-forth motions to cover all surfaces of each tooth.
- Brush for a full two minutes. Some electric toothbrushes have built-in timers, or you may choose to use a timer to help ensure you’re brushing the full two minutes.
- Some patients find it helpful to work in quadrants. For example, start in the lower right-hand corner of your mouth and work your way towards the front, then move to the lower left-hand corner. After one minute on the bottom, move to the top and repeat.
Your partners in oral health
The Life Smiles Dental Care team is always happy to answer any questions you have about your daily oral hygiene routine. To schedule your appointment at our Phoenix, AZ practice, call (602) 786-5484 today!