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How can I keep my teeth and gums healthy

Published on Sun, 05 Aug 2012 17:55:04 +0530

What technique should I use?

There are so many techniques of tooth brushing. However, application of all techniques will depend on the individual skill. Therefore, a technique suit for an adult may not be suitable for a child because their manual skills are not fully developed as adults.
The following is a technique that is easy to practice for an average adult.

  • Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your teeth, pointing the bristles toward the gum- line. The joint between the teeth and the gum is a nice place for bacteria and plaque to accumulate, so it is important to clean to this area.
  • Then brush one or two teeth at a time by jiggling the brush gently back and forward.
  • Do not be excessively vigorous – it might damage your gum. Also do not be too mild because the area will not get cleaned.
  • Once you finish the gum-lines of teeth, brush the biting surfaces by simple scrubbing or by circular movements.
  • Be systematic when brushing. Brush teeth in order, inside, outside and biting surface of a tooth, without missing out a single tooth surface.
  • Once you finish brushing teeth remember to brush the tongue.
  • If you have a crowded teeth take extra time to brush these teeth as normal brushing may not clean these areas effectively.
  •  You really should do it in front of a mirror so you can see what you are doing.

For children below 2-3 years, parents need to brush the kid's teeth. With the growth of the child, gradually encourage them to brush their own teeth with simple technique (simple scrubbing) under parental supervision.

How often should I brush?

Brush at least two times a day. Best times are once in the morning and then in the night before go to sleep.

If you are at high risk for tooth decay, (for example, during pregnancy, wearing braces) you need to brush more than two times a day, at least after every main meal.

How long should I brush?

This will depend on your skill. For an average person it will take about 2-3 minutes. But if you are new to the brushing technique or you have less manual skill (like children) it will take longer time. Remember, all it needed is to brush the teeth thoroughly without missing out a single tooth.

How do I know my brushing is satisfactory?

This is a simple test that you can check your brushing. After brushing, move the tip of the tongue all over the tooth surfaces. You feel ‘smoothness’ when the tip of the tongue passing through cleaned tooth surfaces. If you feel ‘roughness’ at any tooth surface, that indicate inadequate brushing.

There are some teeth that people tend to missed out during brushing. These are inner surfaces of front teeth, crowded teeth and corner-most teeth in the mouth. Therefore make special attention to brush these teeth.

Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups

Most of the time, the early signs of dental diseases are ‘painless’. So you cannot detect these all alone by yourself and you may need an expert to detect them. If you visit a dentist regularly, the dentist will check your mouth to detect any early signs of diseases and will tell you what you should do.

Remember, most dental diseases are reversible at the early stage. So when detect early, by just following simple instructions by dental professionals, you can get rid of them without having complex & expensive treatments.




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