The Correct Way to Brush Your Teeth 

If you are like most people, you undoubtedly learned to brush your teeth as a child. And chances are you have not given it much thought since then. That is understandable. However, there may come a time when we realize our oral hygiene practices could be improved. Talk to a Northeast Philadelphia dentist today to learn more. 

What you need to brush your teeth 

The first step in brushing correctly is to ensure you have the proper tools. You will require the following: 

  • A toothbrush 
  • Floss 
  • A fluoride toothpaste 
  • Mouthwash (optional) 

Every 3 to 4 months, you should replace your toothbrush. When your toothbrush bristles become frayed from misuse, brushing loses some of its effectiveness. Most adults should use fluoride toothpaste authorized by the American Dental Association. 

Fluoride protects your teeth from decay. Fluoride toothpaste is not recommended for extremely young children. Yet, the ADA continues to recommend: 

  • Children under three with their first teeth can use a smear of fluoride toothpaste the size of a rice grain. 
  • Children from three to six can begin using a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. 

Fluoride-free toothpaste is available if you are concerned about your child eating toothpaste. 

How to brush your teeth correctly 

Brushing your teeth can help remove plaque as well as bacteria that accumulate around the gumline and on the teeth. If not cleaned regularly, plaque can cause tooth decay, cavities, and periodontal disease. Brushing properly can protect teeth from decay and illness. 

Brushing your teeth using a regular plastic-handled, nylon-bristled toothbrush is the most basic method. The entire procedure should take about 2 minutes. Try pacing until you know how long 2 minutes feels when brushing your teeth. Take the following steps: 

  • Step 1 

Begin with the outside surfaces of your teeth. Allow yourself sufficient time! Brush your upper and lower teeth gently. Going tooth by tooth can help you slow down and avoid missed places. 

  • Step 2 

Tilt your brush 45 degrees. Brush the gumline to remove any accumulated plaque or food debris. Brush the teeth gently back and forth with short, tooth-wide strokes. 

  • Step 3 

Brush the inside of your teeth. Since the interiors of your teeth are less visible, it is tempting to neglect them, yet these inside surfaces are just as susceptible to plaque. Brush back and forth at a 45° angle to clean the inside surfaces of the teeth. 

  • Step 4 

Brush your teeth’s biting surfaces. Brush the crowns of your back teeth, where food can easily become lodged, with short back-and-forth strokes. 

  • Step 5 

Brush your tongue to eradicate odor-causing germs for fresher breath.