Brushing your teeth is one of those routine daily exercises most of us don’t give a second thought to. And, for most, they are on autopilot while brushing their teeth. However, if you are just going through the motions while brushing your teeth you may be overlooking or even missing some of your teeth’ surfaces which makes you more susceptible to cavities and decay. That is why now is the best time to improve your general and overall dental hygiene and oral health.
October is National Dental Hygiene Month. Not only does this month focus on Dental Hygiene but it is a great time to get to know your dental hygienist here at Aqua Springs Dental. Hygienists are not only there to give you a squeaky clean smile but they are also all about education. Be sure to talk with them about your family’s dental care habits and routine and ask them for help improving you and your family’s oral health.
Here are two helpful tips to ensure proper brushing and flossing:
Let’s start with Brushing. We all have heard to brush twice a day for 2 minutes each time to ensure proper care. However, while most people know they need to brush at least twice a day, having the proper technique is also vital for good oral health. When you brush, make sure your toothbrush is at a 45-degree angle to your gums and use gentle, back and forth strokes to clean each tooth. As you brush, you want to address every tooth surface, including the outer, inner, and chewing surfaces. When you need to clean the inner surface of your front teeth, rotate the brush to a vertical position, and use up-and-down strokes to make it easier. And, the most often overlooked area to clean is the tongue. Not only can it remove any leftover food particles, but it can also help keep your breath fresh.
Next, let’s focus on proper Flossing techniques. Flossing should be, at a minimum, a daily activity. It allows you to clean tooth surfaces that your brush can’t reach and make sure that food particles or plaque aren’t trapped between your teeth. As you floss, you want to curve the floss slightly around the side of each tooth, doing at least one up-and-down pass with the floss curved to the right and another where it curves to the left. Additionally, move the floss slightly below the gum line, but don’t go too far or use too much pressure or you can damage the tissue. If it has been a while since you flossed, you may experience some slight discomfort and maybe even bleeding. If this doesn’t clear up after a few times flossing, it may mean that you might have periodontal disease. If you continue to see bleeding, be sure to schedule a dentist appointment with us as soon as you can. While gum disease cannot be reversed, it can be helped.
Remember, October is not only about dental hygiene, but also about your hygienist. Make sure you tell them thank you at your next visit. If it has been a while since you were last seen, be sure to schedule an appointment today!