AJ Dental Group resident dentist, Dr Andrew Gough, offers his professional advice.
As experienced dentists, and with the range of treatments available to us at our Woking dental practice, we can now go a long way to restoring teeth that have become decayed or have broken. This is good news for anyone who has a dental problem, but many of these can often be avoided in the first case.
Although accidents can and do happen, and we can, to a large degree, reduce the number of problems that we have by being careful about what we eat and drink, a large part of preventative care still revolves around how our patients look after their teeth at home.
The truth is that keeping your teeth clean and healthy is not difficult and doesn’t take much time at all. Despite this, some people take less than ideal care when doing this. Below, we offer a brief and simple, yet important guide to looking after your teeth at home.
This is the very foundation of good home oral care. There really is no excuse not to brush your teeth twice a day, for a couple of minutes each time. Even if you do this though, there are a number of things that you should check that you are doing.
- Are you using a worn out toothbrush? If so, this will be less effective at removing bacteria and food. Make sure to change your brush every three months or even before if you notice the bristles becoming worn. The same applies to the head of an electric toothbrush.
- Angle the bristles towards the gums, both top and bottom. This helps them to reach into the gum pockets where bacteria and food can collect.
- Always use a fluoride toothpaste. Whilst most toothpastes contain this, some may not. Please check the label.
- Brush gently in a circular motion. There is no need to ’scrub’ your teeth hard and doing so is likely to lead to enamel wear and sensitive teeth.
- Check that you really are spending two minutes brushing. Set a timer and we suspect you may be surprised to find that you are actually falling short of this, even with the best of intentions.
- When you have finished, spit but don’t rinse with water. This enables the fluoride to have more effect.
- Never eat or drink anything but water after you have brushed your teeth at night.