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Brushing Teeth
Dr Chris Darby

Dr Chris Darby

Brushing Your Teeth – It’s Simple but Not Easy

 Here are 7 simply tips to remember.

Some people say playing golf is simple – hit the little white ball into the hole, but getting that little white ball into that little hole is not easy. Tooth brushing is the same, its essentially simple – remove all the bacteria from around your teeth, but since over 90% of the community have gum infection that rots their jaw bone away – it is obviously not easy.

A beautiful shiny smile gives us all the confidence to conquer the world. Being concerned that you have a bit of bad breath is never good for our confidence. So here are some hints to help you build your confidence and make a great first impression to everyone you meet.

Do you know how to brush your teeth properly? Most people think they do but here are some tips just in case:

  1. It’s a Feeling not a Technique: Actually, brushing your teeth is not really a technique you need to learn, it’s a feeling. The feeling of the toothbrush bristles pushing under the gum and removing the bacteria. The basics are: brush in small circles with the tooth brush bristles angled at 45-degree to your tooth on the edge between the tooth and gum. Do this in all areas of your mouth, especially the hard to access places such as back molars and your tongue. Be thorough and systematic – always start and finish in the same spot.
  2. Get a FREE lesson from your Dentist or Hygienist. Our hygienists and staff at Lifetime Dental are experts at teaching you how to brush and floss, so next time you are in, ask them to give you a lesson and then at each 6 month active maintenance appointment get some hints on how to brush better.
  3. The right brush: Small head and soft bristles. You are trying to get the bristles under the gum so small is better than big. Soft bristles are gentle on your gums. As for a manual or electric toothbrush? That is a matter of personal preference, but an electric toothbrush can be more effective if your technique is not great. However, it is not really the brush, I can brush just as effectively with a manual brush as with an electric tooth brush. The key is knowing what to do with it.
  4. Take your time and be systematic: You should aim to brush at least twice a day – in the morning after breakfast and before going to bed. Your goal is to remove the germs and bacteria that accumulate on your teeth twice a day. Always brush with a systematic approach. Start on the top right teeth on the check side. Work around to the outside of the upper teeth from the right to the left and then go to the inside or tongue side of the upper teeth. Then go to the lower teeth in the same pattern outside first from right to left and then the inside from left to right.
  5. Easy does it: Be gentle when you brush but not too gentle – the bacteria do not adhere to your teeth very tightly so they are easy to remove.
  6. Clean and dry your brush: Clean your brush after each use to remove those germs that can remain on your brush. Also, rinsing your brush will remove residual toothpaste that can harden bristles prematurely. A light water rinse and air dry is enough.
  7. Regularly replace your toothbrush: When was the last time you replaced your toothbrush? The Australian Dental Association recommends that you replace your brush every two to three months, on average. Replace it when it no longer feels like it is removing the bacteria from under your gums, when the bristles look flattened.

We all think we are brushing well but how do you know? If you have some bleeding or are concerned about bad breath then you can definitely do better so please give our receptionists a ring on (03) 9529 2920 and book an appointment so you can smile with confidence and never be concerned about bad breath when you are close to your partner.

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