If you’ve never really thought about your oral hygiene routine, it might be time to learn how to clean your teeth effectively and efficiently. A quick scrub before you head out the door may help keep your breath fresh, but a proper clean and floss will remove the little bits of food which can cause real problems down the track.
Good cleaning techniques are even more important if you’ve had crowns or bridges, and other dental work. The right flossing method or a particular little dental brush can make all the difference to keeping your teeth in great condition after treatment.
If you stopped paying attention, after you no longer needed a parent to help you clean your teeth, there are some things you might not realise. Did you know you need to brush for at least two minutes, morning and night? And that’s after you’ve finished breakfast, not before you put your makeup on and pick up a coffee and croissant for breakfast at your desk.
If you’re too frantic in the morning, take a toothbrush kit to work with you and clean your teeth after your morning tea break. If you’re too tired in the evening to pay attention, brush straight after your meal and skip the late-night snacks.
If you are having your teeth straightened using Invisalign, you need to clean your teeth and aligners immediately after having any food or drink, except for plain water.
Did you know that almost half the surface area of your teeth is between them? That’s why it’s vital to make sure you floss at least once a day, as it cleans where your toothbrush can’t. If you sometimes forget, floss before you brush your teeth. Don’t forget that flossing is also important for fresh breath as it gets rid of any nasty bits of food hidden away in your teeth.
If you have a bridge or braces, you may need to use special little dental brushes as well to get around those tricky areas. Your North Shore Dentistry dentist will show you how to clean with them and discuss the best brush options for you.
Mouthwash isn’t a substitute for cleaning your teeth or curing bad breath. It can do a whole range of things from making your breath smell fresher for a little while, to special therapeutic mouthwashes that help with certain oral problems. If you have bad breath, you need to see your dentist in case you have an underlying dental problem or need to develop better oral hygiene skills.
Saliva protects your teeth and gums, and is the body’s natural mouthwash. If you aren’t producing enough saliva, acids in food and natural bacteria of the mouth can start to damage your teeth. If you have problems producing enough saliva, which can happen with certain illnesses and medications, make sure you drink plenty of water and talk to your dentist about available treatments.
And don’t forget to see your North Shore Dentistry practitioner every six months for your dental check.
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