At Wilson Dental Group in Raleigh, we recommend two minutes as a minimum time for brushing your teeth. Most people think they brush that long, but would be surprised if they actually set a timer. More common is brushing for about a minute, if that.
We would like to see all our patients devote more time to this most important activity. Brushing your teeth, after all, is essential to good dental health.
We recommend brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day, and with a soft-bristled toothbrush. We strongly recommend flossing, too. Before or after you brush? The jury remains out on that one. We think before is better, but the most important thing is that you do it.
Be sure to brush all over your teeth: the front and the sides, inside and out, and the tops. When you to the sides, be sure to brush along the gumline. Use a gentle touch, and hold the brush at a 45-degree angle.
Use a pea-sized blob of fluoridated toothpaste – or more than a pea-sized, if you’re so inclined. Too much toothpaste is no big deal, but be sure to use enough.
Make sure the head of the toothbrush isn’t too big, especially if you have a smaller mouth. It needs to fit easily between your cheeks and gums. The handle is less important. Make sure it feels comfortable in your hand. Replace your toothbrush every three months, if not more often.
Plaque is that soft and loose film on your teeth. You don’t have to scrub really hard to remove it. Think of it not so much as brushing, but massaging your teeth. Keeping that in mind should help you keep a light touch.
Above all, brush for at least two minutes. If you’re running late, and are tempted to cut it short, resist. If it helps, use a stopwatch. You’ve probably got one on your smart phone.
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