Failure to take good care of them can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and bad breath. The best treatment is prevention, which does not take place at the dentistís office, but rather at home in front of a sink. Proper brushing and flossing are essential in cleaning your teeth and gums effectively. All you need are a toothbrush, tooth paste, floss, cup of water and a little help with these techniques on how to properly use toothbrushes.
It may feel awkward the first time you perform these tasks. With practice and repetition, youíll master these skills over time. Remember to use an ultra-soft toothbrush and gentle pressure. You do not have to use heavy force to brush your teeth. This can actually where away your teethís enamel and cause receding gums. The key is soft bristles, light pressure and long duration for at least 2 minutes when you brush. You can soften your brush by running it in warm water for 1 to 2 minutes.
Here are some good oral hygiene instructions for how to properly brush your teeth:
- Place bristles along the gum line at a 45-degree angle. Be sure to contact the tooth surface and the gum line.
- Gently brush your outer tooth surfaces of 2 to 3 teeth using a vibrating back and forth rolling motion. Move brush to the next group of 2 to 3 teeth.
- Maintain a 45-degree angle with the bristles, making certain youíre contacting the tooth surface and gum line. Gently brush using back, forth and rolling motion along all of the inner surfaces.
- Tilt brush vertically behind the front teeth. Make several up and down strikes using the front half of the toothbrush.
- Place the brush against the biting surface of the teeth and use a gentle back and forth scrubbing motion. Brush the tongue from back to front to remove odor-producing bacteria.