The effectiveness of excellent oral hygiene can be minimized if you fall into bad habits. This is the case even if you visit a dentist for regular cleanings and brush and floss religiously. Below is a guide to some destructive dental habits you should avoid.
5 Dental Habits That Harm Your Teeth
1. Not Brushing Long Enough
You should brush for two minutes every day, but some people cut this task short. Set a timer so you know you’re cleaning your teeth for long enough. Or, play a favorite song that’s two minutes in duration.
2. Brushing Too Soon After Eating
While it’s smart to brush your teeth after eating to remove any residual food particles, you’ll want to wait at least 30 min. before doing so. Many foods are acidic, especially citrusy or sugary foods, and they’ll leave your enamel temporarily vulnerable and weakened. While you wait to brush, try drinking water or chewing a brand of sugar-free gum a dentist recommends.
3. Rarely Replacing Your Toothbrush
Many people don’t replace toothbrushes frequently enough. Switch these tools out every three to four months or when they show signs of wear and tear, such as frayed or splitting bristles.
4. Using a Hard Toothbrush & Brushing too Firmly
You may feel like you’re cleaning more effectively with a hard-bristled brush, but these can damage teeth. As you age, your gums will change shape and expose the roots of the teeth. This area is much more sensitive to hard bristles and brushing too harshly or with a stiff brush can cause tooth sensitivity and enamel erosion. A dentist can advise if you’re using too firm of a brush.
5. Storing Your Toothbrush in a Container
If you think you’re protecting a toothbrush from bacteria by storing it in a closed container, think again. Moisture inside the container will inevitably lead to the growth of germs and bacteria, so keep toothbrushes upright in an area where they can air dry.
If you’re searching for a new dentist, Mark Stephens, DMD is the perfect choice. Located in Richmond, KY, he and his staff offer a number of excellent services including orthodontics, family dentistry, wisdom teeth removal, InvisalignⓇ, and cosmetic and preventative dental services. To learn more or get tips for brushing, visit their website or call (859) 626-0069 today.