It is essential to prevent the proliferation of oral diseases and prevent them from evolving if they are already suffered.
If you brush your teeth three times a day, you may think that everything is done. But maybe you forget something, for example, that you cannot use mouthwashes at will or that you must also clean your tongue, among other details.
Oral health is something we don’t pay much attention to until the problem already exists. The deterioration of a tooth or gum disease, when they are advanced, usually cause pain or bleeding, and that is when all the alarms go off. But by that time, it may already be too late.
WHAT DO WE DO WRONG WHEN BRUSHING THE TEETH?
Good tooth brushing is the basis for starting to be sure that we have good habits for oral health. Please take a look at the seven mistakes you shouldn’t make when cleaning your teeth, as specialists from the Global Dental Clinic of Dr. Aatman Joshipura.
- Share the toothbrush. Although it may seem somewhat unpleasant, it is more common than you think, and it is a practice that causes bacteria to be transferred.
- Use a stiff bristle brush. Enamel and gums can suffer if the filaments have a stiff consistency. It is best if the bristles are soft or of medium thickness.
- Forgetting to wash your tongue. It is an essential source of bacteria, so it must be brushed for complete and adequate oral hygiene.
- Use baking soda or other “home remedies” to whiten teeth, as they can scratch the enamel.
- Wet the toothbrush paste before brushing your teeth. It is an almost unconscious gesture for most and what we are doing is that the toothpaste loses its properties or eliminated, and not enough remains.
- Use fluoride or specific mouthwashes for certain pathologies without being supervised by the dentist.
Do not visit the dentist at least once a year. It is advisable to make two annual visits, one for the review and another for dental cleaning.
GOOD DENTAL HYGIENE
This daily and “simple” act has its instructions for good use. The time we spend, for example, does matter: a good brushing lasts at least 2 minutes. You should also ensure that the angle and pressure are adequate, and when storing the brush, it is better not to leave it in a closet or put a protector on it.
- Go from the gum to the tooth, with the brush angled slightly towards the gum. It starts on the outside, continues on the inside and ends with the chewing edge.
- When you’ve gone through all four parts, stick your tongue out and put the brush as far back as you can. Do back-to-front sweeps in smooth but firm movements four or five times.
There are other details, which we explain below, that you should also take into account.
The use of dental floss
A complete brushing removes most of the remain on the teeth, but there are areas where the brush is unable to reach, so the use of floss or floss may be indicated in daily oral hygiene after brushing.
The use of dental floss is indicated for spaces between teeth of minimum dimensions. In the event of significant separation, the floss is not practical, and it is necessary to switch to the interproximal or interdental brush, which, unlike silk, has different sizes according to a colour code that allows choosing the most appropriate to the size of the teeth without damaging them.
Both must be used gently, without pushing the gum or rubbing it roughly, as they can damage it and cause inflammation, bleeding, and even more acute diseases.
If you suffer from tooth sensitivity, whitening pastes are not recommended as they can increase it. Ideally, the dentist is the one who indicates the toothpaste that suits each one in the guided annual visit. Think that if you use something that your teeth do not need, instead of helping, you may be harming them.
Rinse and Mouthwashes
As long as mouthwash is complementary to daily dental hygiene, it is recommended, but it should never be used as a substitute for brushing; that is, it is a supplement. Ideally, a dentist or dental hygienist should choose the one that suits you (there is a wide variety of them) according to your needs.
Although, in general, it is not recommended to use it daily (if the specialist does not indicate it) and avoid those whose composition contains alcohol or sugars.
HEALTHY CUSTOMS FOR YOUR TEETH
In addition to hygiene, your lifestyle habits also affect the health of your mouth.
It takes away nerves and tensions: A study from Tufts University (USA) has seen a direct relationship between periodontal disease and stress. They suggest that pressure promotes gum inflammation and bleeding. It also causes bruxism (teeth grinding), a gesture that wears down the enamel.
- Alcohol, coffee and foods that affect you. Due to its composition, it degrades tooth enamel and has sugar, facilitating the development of cavities. On the other hand, red wine contains pigments that can stain the teeth, so it should not be abused. The same goes for coffee (if it is taken in excess). As for food, sugar is the one that must be put at bay to take care of both teeth and many other aspects of health.
- Do sports. Lack of regular exercise favours the development of diabetes 2, a disease that increases the risk of periodontitis because the higher proportion of sugar in the blood makes it easier for bacteria to proliferate. Doing some sport helps (even when you already have the disease) to control glucose and prevent oral damage.
- Avoid tobacco. Researchers from the University of Seville have shown a correlation between smoking and a type of periodontitis, called apical, which affects the tooth’s root.
- Keep acidity away. Try not to make dinners that are too spicy or abundant that promote gastric reflux.
- Chew gum with xylitol. If you cannot brush your teeth, this substance has a cleaning “mop” effect.
- Don’t bite your nails. Due to its hardness, doing so can damage the surface of the tooth, cracking its enamel. Also, bacteria live under the nails and, when biting them, they can pass to the tooth and cause cavities.