Tips for Better Oral Hygiene

Our Dentists in Stamford knows that there is an overwhelming amount of oral hygiene techniques found on the Internet today. It seems like even the toothbrush aisle has expanded as well. With all the differing reports surrounding dental hygiene, the doctors at Pearl Dental want to provide patients with a few reliable tips for maintaining good oral hygiene.

Let’s start at the very beginning with your oral hygiene routine in the morning! Although many people believe that it’s best to eat breakfast before you brush, this can actually be more harmful than helpful. When you first wake up, you should brush your teeth in order to brush away all of the harmful bacteria that has formed in your mouth overnight. Then after you eat, you can rinse with a fluoride mouthwash in order to curb any bad-smelling breath. In fact, you should always wait 30-40 minutes after eating before brushing your teeth in order to allow saliva to naturally neutralize the low pH levels in the mouth caused by food and drinks. If you brush right away, the acid in the mouth gets brushed into the teeth and can cause erosion and loss of tooth enamel, making teeth sensitive and weaker over time.

Another oral hygiene misconception is to rinse with water after brushing, but doing so washes away the fluoride in toothpaste, which is good for your teeth and helps to prevent tooth decay. Your Dentists in Stamford suggest spitting out excess toothpaste instead. Try a few different flavor toothpastes if the aftertaste is too strong for you.

There is no argument over the benefits of an electric toothbrush over a manual toothbrush. Either one is fine to use on your teeth, however if you lack the ability to firmly grip your brush because of arthritis or joint pain, then you may want to consider an electric toothbrush over a manual. For both of these brushes, you’ll need to change either the head (for an electric) or the entire toothbrush (for a manual) every 3 months. After 3 months, the bristles will start to fray and they won’t be able to do the job of cleaning your teeth and gums properly. Make sure you buy soft bristle brushes when replacing your toothbrush to avoid receding gums!

Brushing is not the only technique for maintaining good oral hygiene. You’ll also need to commit to daily flossing in order to keep your teeth in tip top shape. Pass the floss gently through the contact point between the teeth and then rub the floss up and down the sides of each tooth. You’ll also want to get each side of the gingival papillae (pink triangle of gum between the teeth). Pull the floss out gently from the space under the gingival papilla or back through the contact points. Never floss backwards and forwards on the gum since this is likely to cause gum damage.

If you have any other questions about your oral hygiene routine, feel free to contact your Dentists in Stamford at (651) 687-0789.