The most basic part of your dental hygiene regimen is your toothbrush. You probably haven’t given it much consideration, which is curious seeing as how you put it in your mouth every day. Have you thought about how to keep it clean? When is it time for a new one? Your dentist in 10021 gives you a breakdown on this every day part of your life.
Do you remember when you learned how to brush your teeth? You probably recall it as well as learning to walk or talk. It just seems like something you’ve always been able to do. A quick chat with your parents will dispel that myth. It would probably surprise you to know those most adults are not brushing their teeth correctly. They are getting the basics, but a few key details can make all the difference.
- Brush at least twice a day, ideally in the morning and before you go to bed
- Brush at least two minutes each time (most people do not brush long enough)
- Be sure to brush the inner and outer surfaces of your teeth, as well as the chewing surfaces on your back teeth
- Move the toothbrush in a gentle circular motion; try to avoid scrubbing like you would with a sponge
This slight motion more effectively breaks up plaque on your teeth. Another thing you can do is make sure to brush your tongue to ensure you have fresh breath, which means you’ll need less mints and gum when meeting people.
WHAT ABOUT THE ACTUAL BRUSH?
One of the biggest questions is whether to get a manual or electric toothbrush. Both are effective at cleaning your teeth, so the answer comes down to your personal preferences. Manual toothbrushes are easy to use and cheap, and most of the time you can get one for free whenever you visit your Upper East Side dentist. They also tend to be more durable than electric toothbrushes since they do not have any moving parts. However, electric toothbrushes have been shown to remove more plaque than manual toothbrushes, but they require more maintenance and need to be charged. The true key to either is routine and consistency. Either way, toothbrushes should typically be replaced every 3-4 months. This tends to be a little shorter for children’s toothbrushes, and it is not a hard and fast rule for adult brushes either. Use your eye to monitor fraying on the brush-head. Once the bristles start to bend out like petals on a flower, it’s definitely time for a replacement.
THE EXTRA MILE
Brushing and flossing are essential for healthy teeth, but so are regular check-ups with the dentist. Your home routine simply cannot reach every part of your teeth, so plaque and tartar can build up as time goes by. Be sure to come see us at New York Family Dental Arts at least twice a year so we can keep you smiling. If you have any other questions about toothbrushes and which you should use, please give us a call today.