A good teeth cleaning routine can act as the cornerstone of your dental hygiene. Although brushing your teeth is something you'll do each day throughout your life, it's easy to fall into the trap of bad habits. To keep your dentist happy and maximise your oral health, try avoiding these key mistakes when brushing your teeth.
Brushing Too Quickly
Unless you're setting a timer to identify how long you spend brushing your teeth, there's a chance you're brushing too quickly. Brushing your teeth for two minutes before you go to bed and on one other occasion during the day is ideal. Setting a timer on your phone can prevent you from brushing too quickly. Alternatively, you can try an electric toothbrush that times how long you spend brushing.
Brushing at a Bad Time
When you have a build-up of acid in your mouth, brushing too soon afterwards can strip the enamel away from your teeth. For example, brushing too soon after drinking citric juices or throwing up can damage your teeth. Although it sometimes feels unpleasant to not brush immediately after being exposed to an acidic substance, it does benefit your oral health in the long run. Try rinsing your mouth, wait for 30 minutes, and then brush your teeth.
Rinsing Away Toothpaste
Many people rinse their mouths immediately after using toothpaste. While this may alleviate any minty sensations you encounter, it also washes away the fluoride that protects your teeth throughout the day. If you can't stomach an overly minty toothpaste, try switching brands until you find something you can tolerate.
Using an Old Toothbrush
Your toothbrush or electric toothbrush head probably ages faster than you think. After around three months, the bristles start to degrade and your brushing technique will suffer. Some dentists also recommend changing your toothbrush after becoming ill. Additionally, you should change yours after you combat a problem such as gum disease. Try setting a reminder on your calendar so that you don't forget.
Using Mouthwash Incorrectly
Mouthwash is an ideal adjunct for brushing your teeth. It won't work on its own, though, as the brushing action is needed for removing food particles. And although mouthwash can cause uncomfortable sensations, you do need to rinse for 30 to 45 seconds. If rinsing for more than a few seconds is causing major discomfort, try using a brand with less alcohol in it. Alternatively, ask your dentist for advice if you have sensitive teeth.