Brushing Basics

Brushing your teeth seems pretty easy, but you may not be getting the benefits of brushing your teeth regularly if it’s not done correctly. The following tips from Dr. McDowell will help you get the most out of brushing your teeth each day!

Choose the Best Toothbrush

There are several brands with different styles of toothbrushes, but how do you know which one is best for you?

First, your toothbrush should fit comfortably in your hand. Handles differ in size and shape, so choose one that isn’t too heavy or light and fits the size of your hand.

Your toothbrush should also fit comfortably in your mouth. Your mouth and teeth may be bigger or smaller depending upon your frame. Ideally, the toothbrush should be able to reach your teeth at the very back of your mouth to keep them healthy and clean. If in doubt, choose a toothbrush with a smaller head versus a larger one in order to keep all of your teeth clean.

Bristles are Important

It may seem like the tougher the bristles, the better they will clean your teeth. However, the bristles of your brush should be soft or extra soft. This way, your gums won’t be harmed by your toothbrush bristles.

These bristles need to to reach inside the spaces between your teeth and gums to remove plaque and bacteria. Hold the brush at a forty-five degree angle instead of perpendicular to your teeth, with the bristles directed at those spaces.

Gently Brush Your Teeth

Just like the bristles of the toothbrush, the motions you use to brush your teeth should be soft. Use short strokes back and forth or in a circular motion to avoid hurting your gums.

Every surface of each tooth needs to be brushed thoroughly, including the top, bottom, outsides and insides of your teeth. Spend time brushing the back of your teeth, cleaning the crevices along the top of each tooth where food can get stuck.

These strategies will ensure that you are cleaning your teeth well each time you brush, but getting an individual consultation never hurts! Call McDowell Family and Cosmetic Dentistry at 503-655-4111 for your personal appointment with one of our dental hygienists today.

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