Many of us are taken aback to learn that the way we’ve been doing something for years is, in fact, incorrect. We learn many mundane habits from our parents who learned them from their parents. The fact that these habits have been passed down for so many generations is enough for us not to question them. However, it appears as though many of our daily dental practices are in fact incorrect. Here are few tips you should take with you into the bathroom the next time you care for your teeth.
To be fair, flossing is a bit of an enigma. It’s more or less assumed that everyone knows how to floss. For those of you who attack the gumline with floss between your teeth, you’re in for a lesson. The best way to go about flossing is to guide the floss between teeth in a zigzag motion gently. Do not pull the floss against your gums too quickly or too hard.
Brushing Too Hard
It would seem that brushing hard is the best way to get vestiges of food out from between your teeth. Brushing too hard may result in a loss of tooth enamel, receding gums, and may increase tooth sensitivity. Don’t press the toothbrush too hard when brushing.
Brushing Right After a Meal
If you’ve just had a meal high in food acids and sugars, you should probably wait a little while to brush. These acids will stick to your teeth after a meal and act as sandpaper if you brush your teeth after a meal. Don’t brush away at the enamel, wait at least 45 minutes to brush after eating.
Don’t Forget to Brush Your Tongue
That’s right, your tongue. Your tongue is a haven for bacteria. Kick out any unwanted guests by brushing your teeth back and forth and from side to side. As a byproduct of killing bacteria, your breath will also smell better.
For any other dental hygiene questions, consult your local San Diego-Oceanside orthodontist for teens and adults.