Common Mistakes Made When Brushing Your Teeth
There is a right and a wrong way to do pretty much anything, which includes brushing your teeth. While you may feel like you are doing everything right by simply moving the brush around your mouth for a couple minutes each day, there are some mistakes that can be made when brushing that you should be aware of.
Brushing Immediately After Eating
You may want clean teeth, but you need to give your mouth some time before you brush your teeth. Your mouth will naturally cleanse the teeth with saliva and remove all of the abrasive material that may be on them. If you brush your teeth right after eating, you're actually scrubbing food particles across the surface of the teeth. Just give yourself an hour or so after eating to ensure your teeth have most of the food particles off the surface.
Brushing Too Hard
Moving the toothbrush aggressively in your mouth is not going to get your teeth any cleaner or make up for forgotten days. In fact, that hard brushing can actually cause more harm than good. You can damage the tooth enamel and harm your gums if you are using too much pressure. Learn to ease back with a loose grip on the toothbrush, or switch to an electric toothbrush that has a pressure sensor.
Not Replacing The Toothbrush
Many people assume that their toothbrush needs to be replaced every six months, since that is when their dentist gives them a new one at their regular checkups. You actually should be replacing your toothbrush much more often than that. It's a good idea to replace your toothbrush every three months. Those worn-down bristles will not be as effective at cleaning your teeth if you go half a year without replacing them. If you have trouble remembering when the last time was that you replaced your toothbrush, remember to do it when the seasons change.
Not Cleaning The Toothbrush Properly
Caring for your toothbrush properly is essential for proper care of your teeth. Don't make the mistake of not rinsing out your toothbrush when you are done brushing. Run it under the water and get rid of any bacteria and toothpaste that are stuck to the bristles. When you're finished, don't put the toothbrush in a dark place without air circulation, since that can promote mold growth within the bristles. You are better off letting the toothbrush air dry on your bathroom counter where it gets sunlight during the day.
Contact a family dental clinic for additional advice.