Even if you take time to clean your teeth at home, you may not be doing so correctly. Often, people rush this process, which still leaves their smiles vulnerable to issues like tooth decay and gum disease. In today’s blog, your Cleveland, TX, dentist looks at the steps necessary to brush and floss your teeth properly each and every day.
The Dangers of Plaque and Tartar Buildup
Over time, harmful oral bacteria in our mouth will break down the particles of sugar and starch left behind on and between our teeth from the foods and drinks we consume. In the process, this coats the teeth in plaque buildup, which could harden into tartar over time. Plaque and tartar weaken our outer enamel, causing demineralization and exposing the sensitive inner layers of dentin to bacteria, leading to tooth decay and eventually, a dental infection. Dental cleanings can completely remove plaque buildup, but brushing and flossing can help limit how much accumulates in between these six months visits.
How to Brush Properly
Each day, you need to brush twice, this goes for kids and adults alike. Each session takes about two minutes at a minimum. Taking two minutes increases the chances of reaching every available surface and removing stray food particles. We suggest a toothbrush with soft bristles, as this prevents inadvertent damage to your outer enamel if you brush a little too hard. You also benefit from using a fluoride toothpaste, as this contains a remineralizing agent that strengthens outer enamel and better protects the smile. Be sure you clean your teeth first thing in the morning and right before going to bed each evening.
Flossing Your Teeth
What about flossing? While brushing is crucial for your smile, flossing is even more so. With floss, we remove the bits of food out of reach of toothbrush bristles such as those trapped between the teeth or along in the gum line. To clean your smile, take a length of floss tape about 18 to 10 inches long, and wrap each end around your thumbs, and hold it taut with your index fingers. Run the tape up and down each side of every tooth, and dip below the gum line. Adjust your grip to use a fresh portion of the tape too. Children may benefit from the use of a floss pick early on. If you have any questions, then please contact our team today.
Do You Have Questions About At-Home Hygiene?
We know that keeping teeth and gums strong means routine daily care, which is why the team at Cleveland Family Dentistry in Cleveland, TX wants to make sure you know how to clean your teeth properly. Contact our office at (281) 592-1234 to schedule your appointment today.