HOW OFTEN SHOULD I BRUSH MY TEETH?
You should brush your teeth at least twice daily, and ideally three times a day.
Brushing more than three times a day could potentially wear down the enamel – that hard outer surface of your teeth – and potentially damage your gums.
WHEN SHOULD I BRUSH MY TEETH?
It’s generally good to brush soon after eating, to remove the bacteria that attack your teeth.
However, you may need to wait 3o minutes after a meal before brushing. For example, sodas, sports drinks and even certain types of fruits and juices contain acids that soften your tooth enamel. Brushing too soon after consuming these foods or drinks could actually remove the enamel and weaken your teeth.
WHICH TECHNIQUE SHOULD I USE WHEN BRUSHING?
Use short strokes and brush up and down your teeth. (Holding your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle is best.) Brush both outer and inner tooth surfaces, and the chewing surfaces as well. You don’t need to brush hard, so be gentle.
In addition to brushing, you should make sure to floss at least once a day to remove the food and plaque that hide in between your teeth.
HOW LONG SHOULD I BRUSH?
Brush your teeth for at least two minutes.
To make sure you’re brushing long enough, try thinking of your mouth as four sections, then brush each section for 30 seconds. It’s a good practice to begin brushing in a different place every week, as you may get lazy towards the end. Try watching TV or listening to music while brushing to make the time go faster.
HOW OFTEN DO I NEED TO REPLACE MY TOOTHBRUSH?
Toothbrushes should be replaced every three to four months. Also replace your toothbrush if you notice bristles are frayed, lose flexibility, or begin to break.
DO I REALLY NEED PROFESSIONAL TEETH CLEANINGS?
Yes. Brushing and flossing are the best things you can do to protect yourself against tooth decay and gum disease; however, only a dentist can remove the hard deposits that form on and in between your teeth.
You should have your teeth cleaned professionally at least twice a year. If you are dealing with problems affecting your oral health, more frequent cleanings may prove helpful.