How your Brushing Habits can Harm your Oral Health
Posted on 9/13/2015 by Allan Hablutzel
Did you know that the way you brush your teeth can harm your oral health? Yes, even if you are brushing often, you could still be doing some harm. Let's take a look at your habits so that you can determine if you need to make any minor changes in order to enhance the health of your teeth today.
Brushing too Hard
Some people think that the harder they brush, the better job it does for their teeth. The opposite is true, however. The harder you brush, the more damage you do to the enamel of your teeth as well as your gums. The enamel is there to protect the interior components of your teeth, so you want to make sure you do everything possible to protect it. That means not brushing too hard - use light pressure to remove food debris and plaque; it will be sufficient enough to clean your teeth. Brushing too hard can also cause the gums to begin receding, which could cause eventual tooth loss - something you do not want to experience.
Brushing too Long
Just as brushing too hard can be harmful, so can brushing too long. The magic number is two minutes. If you brush any longer than that you are likely doing more harm than good. If you have touched upon every area in your mouth, you have eliminated as much plaque and bacteria as you can. Rather than brushing longer, use that time to floss in between each tooth in order to remove any remaining bacteria or plaque that may have stayed hidden in between your teeth. Flossing can help prevent gum disease and eventual heart attacks while brushing too long will cause serious issues down the road.
Using the Wrong Toothbrush
The bigger the better is not the case when it comes to brushing your teeth the right way. You should be using a toothbrush that fits comfortably in your mouth. If the head of the toothbrush is too large, it will not fit into the crevices of your mouth, which means plaque and bacteria can build up and cause decay and gum disease. Find a toothbrush that fits your mouth well and that has soft bristles. Hard bristles are too abrasive and cause the same type of damage that brushing with too much pressure would cause.
Brushing too Often
Brushing your teeth twice a day is the magical number, but if you are able to brush a third time, say after lunch, that could be beneficial for your teeth. Anything more frequent than that, however, can begin to cause serious issues for your teeth. Brushing after every meal gets a majority of the plaque and bacteria out of your mouth that has accumulated for the day without putting your enamel and gums under unnecessary pressure.
The techniques and tools you use to brush your teeth have a great impact on your oral health. The key is to be gentle and use the tools that apply just enough pressure without doing any harm. You are working on removing plaque, bacteria, and food debris, not the enamel or your gum tissue.
Focus on light touches with tools that are not too abrasive to keep your teeth healthy. In addition, avoid consuming a diet that his high in sugar and carbs and rather focuses on fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy, and lean proteins in order to enhance your oral health. These habits combined will give you a beautiful, healthy smile for many years to come.
Please call us today for your oral health check-up and for a refresher on how to properly brush your teeth!