Hey everyone, Dr. Jason here!
Since we were old enough to start brushing our teeth, our parents have taught us a number of ways to prevent cavities and maintain a healthy set of teeth. Despite this, maintaining all of these positive habits is difficult to achieve on a permanent basis. After all, we are all entitled to the occasional lapse in our routine. However, I wanted to share with you seven common dental pitfalls that you absolutely must try to avoid whenever and however possible.
- Brushing Once A Day
This is the most obvious tip, and certainly the most important. Regular brushing stops the bacterial build-up of plaque. Studies have shown that even missing one brushing session can start the process of forming cavities. Make sure you brush twice a day for two minutes to keep your teeth plaque free.
- Improper Brushing Method
The technique you use in brushing your teeth is just as important as brushing. One of the most common mistakes we make is missing areas of the mouth. When brushing ensure that every tooth is cleaned and that you clean the total surface area of the tooth. When you’re in a hurry it can be easy to just skim over areas but this often leaves plaque on the teeth and along the gum line – leading to cavities and gingivitis. In addition also be careful not to brush your teeth too hard as you can damage your gums.
- Using the Wrong Toothbrush
Ensure you use the right tools for the job. Toothbrushes come with different thickness and strength bristles. Small headed brushes are widely regarded as the best as they allow you to reach everywhere in your mouth more easily. In terms of bristles softer tend to be better – ideally with rounded heads to prevent aggravation of the gums.
- Not Replacing Your Toothbrush Enough
Once the bristles start to lose their strength and they begin to spread it is already past time to replace your brush. Our best tip is to buy multiple brushes and always have one spare in the bathroom cabinet.
- Not Using Floss
No matter how well you brush, you simply can’t reach every area between your teeth. Regular flossing helps remove plaque and food that builds up between your teeth. The build-up of plaque along the gum line is one of the leading causes of gum disease. Daily flossing helps remove plaque and prevent gum disease.
- Too Much Sugar
Our diets are among the leading causes of tooth decay. The biggest enemy is sugar and/or fizzy drinks. Simply put, drinking these beverages, especially when you aren’t consistent in the other tips on this list, eats away at your teeth.
- Not Visiting the Dentist
Even if your oral hygiene is superb you still should visit the dentist twice a year. Visiting the dentist regularly ensures that any problems that do arise can be quickly dealt with. Your dentist can also make sure you are using correct brushing techniques and advise you on the best options for oral care.