Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day for about two minutes to help keep your teeth and mouth healthy. Plaque is a film of bacteria that coats your teeth if you don’t brush them properly. It contributes to gum disease and tooth decay. Tooth brushing stops plaque building up. Try to make sure you brush every surface of all your teeth.
Did you know…
that the type of toothbrush you use makes a difference in your oral health? The ADA recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush with a head that is ergonomically proportioned to the inside of your mouth. Many patients erroneously believe that medium or hard-bristle toothbrushes are more efficient; but these brushes can actually cause abrasions to the teeth and gums, making them more vulnerable to decay. The ADA also recommends replacing your toothbrush about four times yearly or whenever the bristles become frayed.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Brush your teeth for about two minutes last thing at night before you go to bed and on one other occasion every day.
Your dentist or hygienist may give you further advice based on your own dental health and needs.
It doesn’t matter whether you use an electric or manual toothbrush. They’re both equally good as long as you brush all the surfaces of all your teeth and you use fluoride toothpaste. However, some people find it easier to clean their teeth thoroughly with an electric toothbrush.
For most adults, a toothbrush with a small head and a compact, angled arrangement of long and short round-end bristles is fine. Medium or soft bristles are best for most people.
If you’re using an electric brush, one with an oscillating or rotating head may be more effective than a manual toothrush./p>
However, making sure you thoroughly clean your teeth at least twice a day is more important than the type of brush you use. If in doubt, ask your dentist.
It’s important to use a toothpaste with the right concentration of fluoride. Check the packaging to find out how much fluoride each brand contains.
All children can use family toothpaste containing 1,350-1,500ppm (parts per million) fluoride, providing you supervise brushing up until the age of seven and make sure children don’t lick or eat toothpaste from the tube. Children under six who don’t have tooth decay can use a lower-strength children’s toothpaste, but make sure it contains at least 1,000ppm fluoride.
Below the age of three, children should use just a smear of toothpaste.
Children aged between three and six years should use a pea-sized blob of toothpaste.
Children over the age of seven and young adults should use a toothpaste that contains 1,350-1,500ppm fluoride.
Adults should use a toothpaste that contains at least 1,350ppm fluoride.
Your dentist may advise you or your child to use a toothpaste with a higher concentration of fluoride if you need it.