You know that you should be brushing twice and flossing at least once every single day. However, even if you are the most diligent brusher and flosser in the world, this doesn’t mean that you aren’t making mistakes when you are cleaning your teeth. When you aren’t maintaining your oral health properly, you could end up with dental issues in the future. Continue reading to learn about some of the most common teeth cleaning mistakes and how you can correct them.
Not Brushing Enough
Even though it is well known that everyone should be brushing twice a day, many people neglect to clean their teeth before going to bed. This may not seem like a big deal but when you leave plaque along the gumline, this can cause inflammation, or gingivitis. When gum disease becomes more advanced, you could be left with and infection that can cause loose teeth, tooth loss, and other health issues. Remember to brush your teeth frequently enough.
Neglecting the Gums
Oral health isn’t just about your teeth. It includes your gums as well. When you brush your teeth, you should also gently brush your gums in order to lessen your chances of inflammation that leads to gum disease and tooth loss.
Too Many Whitening Products
There are many different types of toothpastes, strips, and mouthwashes out there that claim to give you a beautiful white smile. However, you should proceed with caution. These products can contain ingredients that are highly abrasive and can increase tooth sensitivity. Ask your dentist for their recommendations for a whiter smile. This way, you can brighten up your teeth in a safe manner.
Do you know how often you should be getting a new toothbrush? Many people don’t. The American Dental Association recommends switching it out for a new one every 3 to 4 months. This is because frayed bristles cannot clean your teeth as effectively and leave more plaque behind. Keep an eye on your bristles so you know when you should purchase a new brush.
Many people tend to brush too hard when using a manual toothbrush. This can actually cause harm by wearing away the protective enamel and damaging your gum tissue, leading to gum recession. Make sure that you are using proper technique and a soft-bristled toothbrush while you are brushing to avoid harm to your smile.
Not Flossing Enough
If you only break out the floss when you feel something stuck between your teeth, this isn’t enough. If you don’t floss enough, you are allowing plaque and bacteria to stay put, ultimately setting you up for tooth decay and gum disease. Remember to floss every day and don’t snap too hard, as this can contribute to gum recession and periodontal disease.
Skipping Dental Visits
If you are only going to the dentist when you are experiencing pain or another dental emergency, this is an issue. Seeing your dentist on a regular basis for checkups and cleanings is crucial for optimal oral health. For most patients, every six months is sufficient. However, some people may need to go even more often, like pregnant women.
In order to keep your smile in the best shape possible, make sure you aren’t making any of the teeth cleaning mistakes listed above. With a good oral hygiene routine comes excellent dental health!
About the Author
Dr. Steven Hatch earned his dental degree from the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry and is committed to taking hours of continuing education in order to stay on top of the latest advances in the field. He has spent over a decade in practice. For more information on maintaining a healthy smile or to schedule an appointment at Dr. Hatch’s office in Forest, VA, visit his website or call (434) 841-1704.