We all want to have healthy teeth, fresh breath and nice smiles. Gum disease and tooth decay are the two most common oral diseases worldwide. Recent studies have identified links between gum disease and general health such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease and so it has never been more important to look after your teeth.
Effective daily oral hygiene is an essential part of your general health and well-being.
Recommended Toothbrushing Technique
A gentle scrub technique with very short horizontal movements to dislodge plaque at the gum margins is effective for most people. Careful use of a gentle scrub method using a toothbrush with soft to medium texture should be effective for plaque removal. A toothbrush with a small brush head is recommended, as a small brush head enables better access to the back of the mouth and to tooth surfaces than a large brush head. While a variety of powered toothbrushes have become increasingly available, only powered toothbrushes with a rotation oscillation action (i.e. brush head moves in one direction and then the other), like the Oral-B toothbrush range, have been found to be better than manual toothbrushes at removing plaque and reducing gum inflammation, and are no more likely to cause injuries to gums.
Excessive pressure while brushing can considerably increase gingival recession (i.e. the gum line recedes leading to exposure of the roots of the teeth), and loss of tooth substance by mechanical abrasion. Holding the toothbrush in a pen grip using just the thumb and forefinger, as opposed to resting the toothbrush in the palm of the hand and gripping with four fingers, results in less pressure being applied when toothbrushing and is recommended. If the bristles of your toothbrush fray outwards within 2 months of use of the toothbrush, you are probably brushing too hard and the risk of gum recession is increased.
Effective Toothbrushing Routine
- A gentle scrub technique involving very short horizontal movements is recommended
- Use a soft to medium textured toothbrush
- Hold toothbrush in a pen grip to avoid using excessive pressure
- Spit out fluoride toothpaste and do not rinse after brushing
- Twice a day – at bedtime and in the morning (or at one other time during the day)