How To Properly Brush & Floss

How To Properly
Brush & Floss

Brushing and flossing are of paramount importance to oral hygiene. Though bi-annual professional dental cleanings remove plaque, tartar, and debris, excellent homecare methods are equally valuable. Proper brushing and flossing can enhance the health of the mouth, make the smile sparkle, and prevent serious diseases.

Reasons why proper brushing and flossing are essential:

  • Prevention of tooth decay – Tooth decay is one of the leading causes of tooth loss, and its treatment often requires complex dental procedures. Tooth decay occurs when the acids found in plaque erode the natural enamel found on the teeth. This phenomenon can easily be prevented by using proper home hygiene methods.
  • Prevention of periodontal disease – Periodontal disease is a serious, progressive condition that can cause tooth loss, gum recession, and jawbone recession. Periodontal disease is caused by the toxins found in plaque and can lead to serious health problems in other parts of the body. Removing plaque and calculus (tartar) from the surface of the tooth using a toothbrush, and from the interdental areas using dental floss, is an excellent way to stave off periodontal problems.
  • Prevention of halitosis – Bad breath or halitosis is usually caused by old food particles on or between the teeth. These food particles can be removed with regular brushing and flossing; leaving the mouth healthier, and breath smelling fresher.
  • Prevention of staining – Staining or the yellowing of teeth can be caused by a wide variety of factors such as smoking, coffee, and tea. The more regularly these staining agents are removed from the teeth using brushing and flossing techniques, the less likely it is that the stains will become permanent.

The Proper Way to Brush

The teeth should be brushed at least twice a day; ideally in the morning and before bed. The perfect toothbrush is small in size with soft, rounded-end bristles, and no more than three months old. The head of the brush needs to be small enough to access all areas of the mouth, and the bristles should be soft enough so as not to cause undue damage to the gum tissue. The American Dental Association (ADA) has given electric toothbrushes their seal of approval; stating that those with rotating or oscillating heads are more effective than other toothbrushes.

Here is a basic guide to proper brushing:

  1. Place the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle where the gums and teeth meet.
  2. Use small circular motions to gently brush the gumline and teeth.
  3. Do not scrub or apply too much pressure to the teeth, as this can damage the gums and tooth enamel.
  4. Brush every surface of every tooth, cheek-side, tongue-side, and chewing surface. Place special emphasis on the surfaces of the back teeth.
  5. Use back and forth strokes to brush the chewing surfaces.
  6. Brush the tongue to remove fungi, food, and debris.

The Proper Way to Floss

Flossing is a great way to remove plaque from the interdental regions (between the teeth). Flossing is an especially important tool for preventing periodontal disease and limiting the depth of the gum pockets. The interdental regions are difficult to reach with a toothbrush and should be cleansed with dental floss on a daily basis. The flavor and type of floss are unimportant; choose floss that will be easy and pleasant to use.

Here is a basic guide to proper flossing:

  1. Cut a piece of floss to around 18 inches long.
  2. Wrap one end of the floss around the middle finger of the left hand and the other end around the middle finger of the right hand until the hands are 2-3 inches apart.
  3. Work the floss gently between the teeth toward the gum line.
  4. Curve the floss in a U-shape around each individual tooth and carefully slide it beneath the gum line.
  5. Carefully move the floss up and down several times to remove interdental plaque and debris.
  6. Do not pop the floss in and out between the teeth as this will inflame and cut the gums.

If you have any questions about the correct way to brush or floss, please ask your dentist or dental hygienist.

Related Services:

Teeth Cleaning

At Gamble & Kingry Family Dentistry, we believe that getting your teeth cleaned every 6 months keep your teeth and gums as healthy as possible.

Emergency Dentistry

You never know when a dental emergency will happen. Thankfully, Gamble & Kingry Family Dentistry is Ashford’s most trusted Dental Emergency team. We have a team of dental experts to serve you.

Periodontal Disease

The word periodontal means “around the tooth”. Periodontal disease attacks the gums and the bone that support the teeth. Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva.

Oral Hygiene Aids

Regular dental checkups are essential for maintaining excellent oral hygiene and diagnosing potential problems, but they are not a “fix-all” solution. Thorough oral homecare routines should be practiced on a daily basis to avoid future dental problems.

Home Care

A beautiful, healthy smile that lasts a lifetime is our ultimate goal when treating patients. Your personal home care plays an important role in achieving that goal.

How To Properly Brush & Floss

Brushing and flossing are of paramount importance to oral hygiene. Though bi-annual professional dental cleanings remove plaque, tartar, and debris, excellent homecare methods are equally valuable.

Fluoride Treatment

Fluoride is the most effective agent available to help prevent tooth decay. It is a mineral that is naturally present in varying amounts in almost all foods and water supplies. The benefits of fluoride have been well known for over 50 years and are supported by many health and professional organizations.

Oral Cancer Screening

The inside of the mouth is normally lined with a special type of skin (mucosa) that is smooth and coral pink in color. Any alteration in this appearance could be a warning sign of a pathological process. The most serious of these is oral cancer.

Digital X-Rays

Dental x-rays are essential, preventative, diagnostic tools that provide valuable information not visible during a regular dental exam. Dentists and dental hygienists use this information to safely and accurately detect hidden dental abnormalities and complete an accurate treatment plan.

Dental Bridges

A safe, low-risk way to replace one or more missing teeth. Natural teeth or dental implants can be used as anchors to support the suspended replacement teeth.

Dental Crowns

Decay or trauma can cause loss of tooth structure and can compromise function as well as esthetics. Extensive loss of tooth structure can best be replaced with a restoration that covers your entire tooth as in a crown. This “full coverage” restoration can strengthen your tooth and in the hands of an expert can provide a long-lasting esthetic and functional result.

Dental Exams And Cleanings

There are two parts to your Gamble & Kingry Family dental visit – examination and cleaning. Your exam will check for cavities, plaque, and tartar on your teeth.

Dental Sealants

Sealants are a thin, protective coating that bonds to the surface of your teeth. When properly applied, sealants can help prevent cavities.

Dentures

If you have lost most or all of your teeth, wearing dentures can be a difficult experience. Worrying about loose or painful dentures can be a drain on your patience and your health. Dental Implant supported dentures made by a specialist in Prosthodontics can change your life?

Extractions

While many of us do our best to keep our teeth healthy, sometimes a tooth needs to be taken out to keep you healthy. In these cases, an extraction is necessary.

Fillings

Dental fillings are the most conservative way to restore smaller areas of tooth decay. In a dental experts hand, these types of restorations can be made to conserve as much of your natural tooth as possible while providing a restoration that is almost indistinguishable from the natural tooth. Both resin and porcelain fillings can be adhesively bonded to your natural tooth to add strength.

Root Canal Therapy

A root canal is a minimally invasive, nonsurgical endodontic treatment. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia and involves opening the crown of the tooth, exposing the roots and pulp of the tooth. When the pulp and root is exposed the infected areas of the tooth are removed.

Teeth Whitening

Let our team help you determine what whitening process is right for you, based on the current color and condition of your teeth.

Veneers

A wafer-thin glass shell that can be bonded to the front of your teeth to mask their shape, color, or size. The highest quality veneers are made individually by hand and are hard to distinguish from natural teeth. veneers can be used to remarkably transform the smile of patients who have worn, chipped, or discolored teeth. Slightly crooked teeth can be straightened as well. Hand-made porcelain veneers are typically very translucent and when bonded to your teeth they are very lifelike.