How can we choose the correct type of toothbrush?
Use a toothbrush that allows easy access to all areas of the mouth especially the back of your teeth. Choose a toothbrush with soft nylon bristles with rounded ends to prevent hurting the gums. It should have a long, wide handle for a firm grasp.
If you are unable to clean your teeth well with a manual , consider using an electric toothbrush to clean more effectively.
What is the difference between electric tooth brush & manual tooth brush & how do we use it?
Many people are using improper brushing techniques and they are not brushing long enough. For the usage of an electric toothbrush, minimal skill is needed and some electric brushes come with a timer setting while a manual toothbrush requires manual dexterity and diligence for effective brushing.
Electric toothbrushes require lesser brushing force to provide effective dental plaque removal than manual toothbrushes. They are gentle and less likely to cause damage to the enamel and gums.
The brushing technique for electric toothbrushes is different from a manual one. Electric toothbrushes perform most of the necessary movements on their own, so you do not have to apply as much pressure as you would with a manual toothbrush. The grip may vary from model to model due to different handle shapes.
- Put the head of the electric toothbrush on the outer surface of each tooth at a 30 to 40-degree angle for about 2 seconds.
- Slowly move the brush from tooth to tooth.
- Repeat the same for the inner surfaces of all teeth.
- Don’t forget to brush the chewing surfaces of all teeth.
- You should spend at least 2-3 minutes in your tooth brushing to ensure effective teeth cleaning. Rinse and clean your brush head after each use.
- Replace your brush head every 3 months or sooner if the head is worn out. A worn out head may reduce your brush’s effectiveness.
What is the correct method of tooth brushing?
- Squeeze a pea-size amount of toothpaste onto a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Use short stokes, in a round circular motion, with your toothbrush angled at 45-degrees towards the gums to clean the outer tooth surfaces, inner tooth surfaces. Brush to-and-fro on thechewing surfaces of the teeth. It is very important to brush along the gum line as gum disease starts here.
- Brush gently to avoid damaging the gums.
- Pay attention to the molar teeth at the back.
- Always try to use the mirror as a guide when you are doing your tooth brushing.
- Brush your tongue to remove bacteria to freshen your breath.
- Brush your teeth at least two to three times a day, after each meal if possible.
- Take your time and be gentle in your tooth brushing.
- Brushing should take about 2 to 3 minutes.
What are the consequences of incorrect tooth brushing?
Incorrect tooth brushing can cause abrasion on the tooth surfaces and damage to the gums. Abrasion is the wearing out of the outer layer of the tooth, called enamel. It can also affect the layer underneath the enamel, called dentin or the root’s layer, called cementum.
Abrasion can be caused by several reasons:
- The use of a hard toothbrush.
- Excessive pressure applied while brushing.
- Use of abrasive toothpaste.
When teeth are worn out, it can lead to tooth sensitivity.
Incorrect tooth brushing can lead to inflamed, easily bleeding or even swollen gums and this can also result in gingival recession.
How can I manage the gaps between the teeth (interdental)?
First, check with the dentist if there are any caries / decay in between the teeth. These cavities are not easily seen as the gaps are quite tight. Your dentist may need to take an X-ray to check thoroughly.
If the gaps in between the teeth are caused by gum recession and not by decay, you need to keep the interdental areas clean to prevent any further deterioration or recession of the gums.
You will need to attend at the dental clinic for regular checkups & cleanings. At home, you will also need to keep the areas clean with floss / interdental brush.