Have Good Teeth Cleaning Habits. Oral health is essential to maintain the longevity of our pearly white teeth. Moreover, it helps to keep the natural-looking smile intact. However, most people may have experienced their dentist, advising them to change their brushing habit or add flossing or mouth wash in their oral health routine.
Poor oral hygiene is one of the main culprits that have the potential to significantly affect the health of the teeth, gums, and surrounding periodontium. You might be surprised to hear that tooth brushing mistakes are more common than you might think. Moreover, you might be brushing your teeth the wrong way ever since childhood without noticing its impact on your oral health. Therefore, it is essential to understand the value of changing these bad habits and adopting a good oral health routine.
Today’s article will highlight bad teeth cleaning habits. Furthermore, we will look at ways to improve these habits and live a life with good oral hygiene.
Why should you follow proper tooth cleaning?
It is a fact that our mouth consists of a collection of 300 – 700 types of bacteria. Some of them work along the busy systems to maintain the health of the oral tissues. However, many dominant species may get triggered to attack the tooth and gums when oral hygiene is neglected. Let me simplify this –
- Failure to brush and floss your teeth effectively leads to accumulation of food particles, plaque, and calculus (1)
- Increased risk of bacterial accumulation may damage the tooth and host other oral concerns.
- Improper methods of brushing may heighten the risk of tooth cavities, periodontal disease, and bone loss.
Correct ways of tooth cleaning can help to remove the disease-causing factors, as mentioned above. Additionally, it will help to avoid serious oral health problems before long-lasting conditions can arise. Moreover, it will limit the cost of expensive dental treatments that are otherwise used to correct the dental issue.
What are the signs that show you don’t have good teeth cleaning habits?
Before analyzing your oral health condition, it is essential to pay attention to your tooth-cleaning habits. Some of the common signs of bad tooth cleaning habits can be easily identified from the following list –
Mistakes with tooth brushing
- Brushing once a day – Tooth brushing ideally should be followed two times day – one in the morning after you wake up and once in the night before sleeping. Brushing your teeth only once a day is a habit that can leave plaque on the tooth surface and, more importantly, around the gum line, causing inflammation. Advanced gum disease may form a vicious cycle that damages the surrounding periodontal tissue and causes further bone and tooth loss. (2)
- Ignoring Gum tissue – Often plaque accumulated around the gum tissue, failure to brush the gums gently can increase the risk of tooth loss.
- Failure to replace your toothbrush frequently – most people tend to use the same toothbrush they received for free from a dental office for the entire year and sometimes even longer. A toothbrush with frayed bristles loses its ability to clean the teeth efficiently. In other words, brushing with a frayed toothbrush is equivalent to not brushing at all.
- Using toothbrush vigorously – we know that not putting pressure on the teeth will not remove the plaque and bacteria. However, this doesn’t mean you brush too hard or too vigorously. Such habits can cause more significant damage to the tooth, including tooth abrasion, fracture, tooth sensitivity, increased risk of decay, receding gums, and bleeding gums.
- Using the wrong toothbrush – people usually use manual toothbrushes, which are efficient in removing the plaque and bacteria in the mouth. However, it is essential to use a soft-bristled toothbrush instead of a hard one as a soft-bristled toothbrush is gently on the tooth enamel and reduces the risk of tooth sensitivity. A power-driven toothbrush, also known as an electric toothbrush, is slightly more effective at removing plaque, but you have to use it gently.
- Brush for less time – most people have a misconception that tooth brushing must be a quick task, and they tend to spend just 45 minutes or toothbrushing. Ideal toothbrushing must be done for at least two minutes, where you cover all the surfaces of the tooth. (3)
- You brush only before visiting the dentist – may people think that brushing before a dental visit will provide them good oral health, and the dentist will appreciate it. However, when the gums are inflamed with plaque due to longterm ignorance, the dentist knows that the patient is not brushing correctly. Therefore, it’s always best to be honest with your dentist and receive proper oral care.
Mistakes with other oral health aids
- You don’t floss – Failure to floss regularly can lead to increased plaque that may set up clusters or camp between the teeth. Moreover, it will set the stage for tooth cavities and gum disease. Most people are not aware of the correct flossing; they often end up snapping too hard, creating gashes in the gums leading to gum bleeding, and gum recession or disease. An alternative to flossing is water flossers. Oral irrigators or water flossers are great to flush out any loose debris between your teeth. (4)
- You choose the wrong rinse – Mouthwashes or mouth rinses are oral health aids that can provide oral health benefits, including reduction of plaque and tooth decay and gum disease prevention. However, most mouthwashes contain a high content of alcohol. Suh mouthwashes may not be an idea for people with dry mouth. Therefore, it is essential to select the right product before buying it.
There is a wide range of mouthwashes and rinses suitable for any person. One among them is an antibacterial mouthwash with natural ingredients. These mouthwashes are usually alcohol-free and efficient in providing long-lasting antibacterial effect in the mouth. Fluoride mouthrinse is another excellent oral health aid for people with increased risk of tooth decay.
Mistakes with teeth whitening kit
Improper selection and enthusiastic use of whitening products
There is a wide range of whitening products in the market, such as whitening toothpaste, strips, and rinses. Every whitening product guarantees a gleaming white smile. However, it is essential to understand your dental needs and the type of result you expect before busying any kind of tooth whitening product.
Many teeth whitening product takes around 10-14 days to show results, while others may instantly provide white teeth in a few seconds. Some products will give you long-lasting results, while others may have a temporary effect. Choose a product that aligns with your convenience and dedication in terms of time. The best way is to ask a dentist for suggestions for a trusted brand of whitening products suitable for your dental condition.
Mistakes with dental visits
Failure to show up for routine dental visits
One of the most common and potentially harmful oral hygiene mistakes that many people do is not to visit their dentists for routine dental check-ups. Typically, regular dental check-ups are a way to examine any abnormal signs or symptoms in the mouth and eliminate the cause right at an early stage.
Moreover, routine dental visits are created to allow professional teeth cleaning and polishing, which helps to thoroughly remove the plaque and calculus from the tooth surface, which is otherwise difficult to remove using a toothbrush.
Routine dental visits are also the right way of maintaining long term relations with your dentist and getting advice or suggestions on any oral health concern that you may have.
For healthy teeth and good oral hygiene, be sure to schedule your bi-yearly dentist appointment, but ask your doctor if you need to come in more frequently.
How can you correct these habits?
The best ways you can correct your tooth-cleaning habits are –
- Brush two times a day in a gentle circular motion for at least two minutes. Avoid aggressive toothbrushing in the horizontal direction as it can abrade the tooth enamel. Make sure you clean each tooth surface and around the gumline.
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste. Electric toothbrushes are also a good option—fluoride toothpaste helps remineralize the tooth enamel and fight against disease-causing bacteria in the mouth.
- Replace the manual toothbrush or the toothbrush head in an electric brush every three to four months.
- Floss once a day after tooth brushing using a floss thread or a floss pick. Oral irrigators are also an excellent option for interdental cleaning for patients who find flossing complicated. People with gaps between the teeth can use an interdental brush to clean the areas between the teeth.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash or a fluoride mouth rinse. Both are effective in fighting the disease-causing bacteria and provide fresh breath throughout the day. (5)
- Choose teeth whitening products that are specialized to prevent tooth sensitivity. Moreover, consult your dentist to get an insight into some of the trusted brands and types of tooth whitening products in the market.
- Routine dental visits for professional cleaning and polishing are mandatory. It helps to avoid the progression of underlying infection and helps the dentist to diagnose the condition at an early stage.
Take away message
Oral health is crucial in maintaining the vitality of the oral tissues and preventing the disease’s progression to such an extent that it may threaten your overall health and well-being. Our mouth is the portal to some of the harmful bacteria.
Most often, these bacteria or infections develop when there is poor oral hygiene. Poor oral health is marked by the accumulation of food debris and dental plaque caused by poor teeth cleaning habits and ignorance. Some of these habits include brushing once daily, not using a proper toothbrush, brushing technique, oral health aid like floss, and mouthwash. Failure to follow up with routine dental visits can also contribute to ignorance of the underlying developing infection in the mouth and its progression to severe complications.
It is essential to identify the flaws at an early stage and change them quickly to maintain good oral health and hygiene. You can start by changing your oral health routine, the type of brush you use, the oral health aids you need, and visiting the dentist for professional teeth cleaning appointments.