A first impression is lasting and the best first impression starts with a smile. You can put your best smile forward by taking good care of it with dental hygiene done right.
To help you brush up on your smile and overall health, please read on for 8 dental hygiene tips that will help you ensure you’re providing yourself the best chance for good oral health.
1. The Right Technique
Brushing your teeth is simple in theory, but it is more than just running the bristles over your them. There is a proper technique behind it and, to get rid of the harmful plaque hiding in your mouth that can cause decay and bad breath, it is important to learn the right technique.
Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle and get the part of your mouth where your teeth and gums meet. From there, you’ll move your brush to a more vertical position to get the front and back of your teeth, as well as the chewing surfaces. Gently brush back and forth and up and down.
2. Give Yourself Time
Research has shown that brushing your teeth is not something can be missed. It’s non-negotiable and, though running late in the morning and feeling tired at night are common explanations for only giving your teeth a quick brush, it really is important to give yourself the time to keep your mouth healthy. It has been scientifically proven that brushing needs to last two minutes twice a day. A good way to remember is the dental rule of two’s: We get TWO sets of teeth in our lives, so we need to brush them for TWO minutes, TWO times per day, and visit our dentist TWO times per year.
How long is two minutes? It’s hard to stare at a clock. Instead, set a timer or enjoy a two-minute-long song while you brush your pearly whites clean.
3. Find the Right Size Brush
Food and other debris are sort of tricky. They have the habit of hiding in very small crevices in your mouth so you’ll need a brush with the right sized bristles for the job.
Most adults need a medium to a small sized toothbrush, as the large ones are not always able to reach those smaller crevices.
4. Make sure to Floss
Flossing your teeth tends to be what is skipped the most. However, there are plenty of germs and bacteria in your mouth that the bristles of your brush won’t be able to reach, especially between teeth and at the gum line. Make it part of your morning and bedtime routine to help prevent bad breath, cavities, and gum disease.
For the best results, you want to wrap the floss around each tooth in a c shape and move it back and forward. Use a fairly long piece of floss when you do this so you can use a new section of it for each tooth. This is so you don’t take the bacteria away and then put it back in another area.
5. Use Mouthwash
Believe it or not, there are places in your mouth that not even floss can reach. For these tough areas, you’ll need to use mouthwash. While mouthwash is slightly optional for most, it’s still a good idea to incorporate into your routine.
It fights the bacteria that causes bad breath and works itself into your gumline to prevent diseases such as gingivitis.
6. Clean Your Brush
While you may feel like toothbrush covers can prevent your toothbrush from getting dirty, the opposite is true. You’re trapping your moist toothbrush in a chamber where it will breed fresh bacteria.
Instead, you just want to rinse your brush thoroughly and let it stay out in the open to air dry. Make sure your brush is well away from someone else’s because you don’t want yours becoming contaminated. You also want to avoid letting anyone use your brush and vice versa.
7. Use a Tongue Scraper
When you’re shopping around for a brush, you might notice that some come with a ridged back for brushing your tongue. These are great because using it on your tongue can get rid of the bacteria that likes to cause bad breath.
Alternatively, if you don’t pick up a brush with a ridged back, you can also brush over your tongue with the bristles of your brush. Both methods are effective and will result in a cleaner, healthier tongue.
8. Just say No to the Midnight Snack
It’s very counterproductive to brush your teeth and then go for a midnight snack, as all of that valuable time you spent taking good care of your mouth will have to be done again before you go back to bed.
If you go to sleep without brushing, the food debris and sugar on your teeth gives the bacteria its own food, which allows it to thrive. Though it’s ok to drink water anytime, brushing, flossing, and rinsing always needs to be the last thing you do before going to bed.
Dental Hygiene Tips for A Healthier Mouth and Body
Did you know your oral health also affects your overall health? It’s always a good use of time to learn or refresh yourself on how to maintain or improve your health. Simple steps and small changes can make all the difference! Use these dental hygiene tips to keep your smile happy and your mouth healthy.
Live in the Jefferson WI area and need to find out if you’re doing your dental routine effectively? Go here to make an appointment at one of our two locations. We can’t wait to see you!