Dentist’s Insight – Oral Hygiene- General housekeeping

Here is what I tell my patients to enable them to look after their teeth and gums… Every day your teeth grow plaque which is full of harmful bacteria. Ensuring your cleaning routine is up to scratch will go a long way in helping you to keep hold of your teeth.

4 simple steps every day:

1- POLISH in between your teeth- Floss/interdental brushes- lift that plaque up from in between the teeth where your toothbrush doesn’t reach. (See video direction on how to floss) If your gums bleed please don’t avoid the area, chances are the plaque is what’s making them bleed in the first place and over time bleeding should reduce.

2- RINSE- I recommend if you want to use a mouthwash that it is alcohol free, but that’s your preference, just get rid of all the bits left over from flossing

3- BRUSH (at least twice a day)- split your mouth into sections to make sure you are getting all the surfaces of your teeth, and the gum line needs a good brush too (check in the mirror you’re in the correct place). Again don’t be discouraged by any bleeding.
*Manual toothbrush technique- angle the brush into the gum and brush in circles, don’t scrub back and forth this won’t get the maximum cleaning done.
*Electric Toothbrush technique- angle the brush into the gum and hold it over the tooth against the gum and allow the brush to do the cleaning. I recommend electric toothbrushes and find patients get good results from them.

4- SPIT, DON’T RINSE- would you rinse your expensive face cream off straight after application? No? Then why rinse off your toothpaste? Fluoride toothpastes today contain all the ingredients your teeth need to remineralise (re-harden) and defend against bacteria. Mouthwashes have less fluoride than toothpaste, so save them for another time in the day (ie- after lunch).