Tooth Brushing Mistakes: Are You Brushing Effectively?

Throughout each day, we put our teeth through a lot. Whether it’s morning coffee, sugary snacks, or a can of soda, we pose threats to the health of our teeth and gums constantly.  The importance of brushing our teeth is clear. However, in order to truly give our teeth a good cleaning, we need to avoid tooth brushing mistakes. Not only will these mistakes lessen the effectiveness of our tooth brushing efforts, they could also do more harm than good for our teeth.

At the office of Robert Rosenfeld DDS, we strive to provide our patients with the best in dental care, and that includes supplying them with valuable and useful information. The tooth brushing mistakes to follow are quite common and if you are guilty of any, you’ll want to improve your efforts and technique. Take a moment to learn how you could be brushing ineffectively.

Common Tooth Brushing Mistakes

It may be surprising, but there are plenty of ways you could be brushing incorrectly.  These tooth brushing mistakes don’t only lessen the effectiveness of your efforts, some could even  do damage to your teeth. Better your oral hygiene regimen and avoid the often-made mistakes to follow:

  • Over brushing: You don’t need to brush your teeth with excessive force, as this could be harmful to your teeth and gums. Brushing too hard could result in swollen and bleeding gums or grooves in your tooth enamel. Be gentle you are only disrupting the bacterial colony formation, not cleaning the grout.
  • Brushing less than 2 minutes: Brushing any less than two minutes will decrease the effectiveness of your brushing. For a thorough cleaning, set your timer for two minutes and ensure you brush the full time and reach all the tooth surfaces.
  • Not renewing your brush: You should get a new toothbrush every 2-3 months, as it’ll start accumulating bacteria on the handle and bristles. If you have had a recent cold, you should get renew your toothbrush as well.
  • Improperly storing your brush: Similar to that above, you need to store your toothbrush in a clean place. Storing it on the counter leaves it susceptible to airborne bacteria. Keep it in a drawer or use a cover.
  • Skipping the tongue: Brushing your tongue is always necessary, yet many patients tend to skip it. You need to ensure you’re eliminating all bacteria, and that includes the surface of your tongue, which harbors a great deal of bacteria.
  • Brushing right after a meal: Surprisingly, it’s recommended you wait 30 minutes after a meal before brushing. After eating, the pH in your mouth increases and becomes acidic, and you could damage tooth enamel by brushing too soon.
  • Using the wrong technique: Brushing isn’t as simple as grabbing your brush and scrubbing. Make circular patterns and move the bristles up and down NEVER back and forth. As you brush, and keep your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle to your teeth to reach gums.

Toothbrushing Tips

Clearly, tooth brushing mistakes are easily made, but if you know how to brush properly, you can easily improve your efforts. In addition to avoiding those tooth brushing mistakes listed above, take a look below for some helpful tips:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day: once before bed and again when you wake up.
  • Start brushing in a different area each time. This way, you won’t fall into the same pattern, which could be missing certain areas.
  • Use a soft-bristled brush to avoid brushing too hard.

Don’t Forget Cleanings with Dr. Rosenfeld!

There’s no denying the power of brushing your teeth, but these tooth brushing mistakes certainly need to be avoided to achieve a thorough brush. Next time you reach for your brush, remember these tips and ensure you’re brushing properly. Also, don’t forget to visit Dr. Rosenfeld in Solana Beach every six months for a checkup and teeth cleaning. In our office, Dr. Rosenfeld and his helpful team can assess your mouth, check for issues, and give your teeth a solid cleaning.

If you need to schedule an appointment, give us a call at 858.755.1189 or contact us here.