Common dental hygiene mistakes generally result in substantial damage to the surface of the teeth. It is crucial to ensure that you understand some of the most common dental hygiene mistakes in order to avoid them and keep your teeth in the best possible condition. Here are several of the most common dental hygiene mistakes that you need to keep in mind during your oral hygiene routine.
Using Teeth Improperly
Sometimes, people use their teeth for things aside from what the teeth are intended. In general, you should only use your teeth to chew your food. When you use your teeth to open packages or hold objects, you can cause damage to the surface of the teeth. This can lead to many issues, which is why it is important to only use your teeth to chew your food.
Brushing Once a Day
You need to be brushing your teeth twice a day in order to prevent significant oral health issues. In some situations, people may brush only in the morning before they go about their day. However, when you don’t brush your teeth at night, you allow the accumulation of bacteria to damage your teeth throughout the night.
Though you certainly need to brush your teeth twice daily, it is important to not brush your teeth too much. When you brush too much, you wear down the protective enamel layer of your teeth. This same thing applies to brushing your teeth too hard. Putting too much pressure on your teeth can lead to damage, which is why it is important to be gentle.
Overuse of Whitening Products
When you regularly use whitening products, you can cause damage to your teeth. This is especially true when you use whitening products that you can purchase at the grocery store, rather than professional whitening services through a dentist. Take care to only use whitening products sporadically to avoid causing damage to your teeth.
Not Enough Time Brushing
It takes at least two minutes of brushing to thoroughly remove plaque and food particles from the surface of the teeth. Many people don’t spend this amount of time when they are brushing their teeth. If you have difficulty spending a sufficient amount of time brushing your teeth, you may want to consider setting a timer or investing in an electric toothbrush that runs in two minute cycles.
Ignoring Gums and Tongue
The majority of people focus solely on their teeth when it comes to their oral hygiene. However, bacteria and food can still accumulate on the tongue and the gums. You need to ensure that you spend time cleaning your gums and tongue in order to prevent damage to your oral health.
Brushing Immediately After Eating
Every time you eat or drink soda, the enamel layer of your teeth softens. This impact lasts for anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour after eating. When you brush your teeth while the enamel layer is softened, it can lead to damage to the enamel. It is important to wait between 30 minutes to an hour after eating to brush your teeth. This also means that brushing your teeth should be the first thing you do in the morning, before you eat your breakfast.
Using Mouthwash Instead of Flossing
There is a common misconception that using mouthwash can replace your flossing processes. Mouthwash can help to strengthen your teeth and flush harmful particles from your teeth, but it is not a replacement for flossing. You still need to floss your teeth regularly, even if you use mouthwash to improve your process.
It is extremely important to do your research to decide on the best product for your specific needs. Consider using a product that contains fluoride, because it will help to strengthen the surface of your teeth. It is also important to ensure that the products that you use are approved by the ADA. This guarantees that they will meet a specific standard set forth by the ADA.
Not Replacing Toothbrush
Many people don’t realize that they need to replace their toothbrush on a regular basis. When a toothbrush gets older and wears out, it will stop being effective at cleaning the teeth. You likely need to replace your toothbrush or the head of your toothbrush roughly every 3 to 4 months.
Improperly Storing Toothbrush
It is critical to ensure that you carefully consider where you store your toothbrush. When you simply throw your toothbrush into a drawer, it is likely to allow bacteria to accumulate. These bacteria will simply transfer to the mouth, which can accelerate the likelihood of issues. Ensure that you keep your toothbrush stored in an upright position in order to allow it to dry effectively.
Not Brushing Properly
It is important to brush your teeth properly whenever you brush them. Hold your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle in order to thoroughly remove food particles from the surface of your teeth. It is also important to refrain from pushing down too hard on your toothbrush when you are brushing your teeth to prevent damage from occurring.
Skipping Dental Visits
Regular dental cleanings are an important component in keeping your teeth healthy. These cleanings allow your dentist to identify potential issues in the early stages, when they are typically easier to resolve. It is important to regularly see your dentist, beyond simply visiting your dentist when you are experiencing a dental-related issue.
Flossing helps to remove trapped particles between the surfaces of your teeth. These surfaces are difficult and sometimes even impossible for toothbrushes to reach. It is incredibly important to floss every day to remove these trapped particles and prevent damage to your teeth.
At Mills River Family Dental, we offer many services to protect the health of your teeth. Avoiding these common dental hygiene mistakes goes a long way toward preventing substantial damage from occurring to your smile. To learn more about how to keep your teeth in the best possible condition, contact us at Mills River Family Dental today!