How to Brush Your Teeth

  • Start with good toothbrush — Use an electric toothbrush if possible because they are more effective in controlling plaque than manual brushes. For example, Sonicare toothbrushes produce sonic vibrations that you can’t replicate with a hand brush. Oral-B and Rotadent electric brushes have small heads that enable you to access hard-to-reach areas. If you’re using a manual brush, use a soft brush with a small head. It’s hard enough to remove plaque, yet gentle enough not to damage your teeth.
  • Use fluoridated toothpaste — Put a pea-sized amount on your brush. The two best brands of toothpaste are Colgate Total and Crest Multicare, but any brand will do unless you have special dental needs and your dentist or hygienist makes another recommendation.
  • Start brushing from a specific location — Work your way to the opposite side, continuing through your mouth so that you end where you started. You should brush for roughly two to four minutes.
  • Use good technique — Make sure you:
    • Hold the brush at a 45-degree angle toward the teeth and gums.
    • Press gently against the gums so that the tips of the bristles go in between your teeth and gums.
    • Apply lateral strokes and roll the brush down to sweep the plaque away from the teeth and gums. Use short strokes on chewing surfaces to get plaque out of the groove and pits. When brushing the backside of your front teeth, hold your brush vertically to reach the teeth better.
    • Repeat this motion six to 10 times and then move onto the next two to three teeth and repeat again.
  • Brush after each meal — Keep a toothbrush and toothpaste in your purse, workbag or backpack if you’re on the go. If brushing after each meal isn’t possible, brush at least twice a day — once when you get up and once before you go to bed.

For more information about proper brushing techniques, call us at 952-432-9155 or ask for a demonstration at your next appointment.

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