Your toothbrush is a simple object, and you likely do not think about it much. However, the humble toothbrush is the first line of defense against tooth decay and gum disease. It is a tool that you should use twice a day to safeguard your oral health between dental visits and keep your teeth strong and attractive. Here are some basic tips surrounding your toothbrush and how to get the most out of it.
1. It Doesn’t Need to be Fancy
There is certainly nothing wrong with choosing an electric toothbrush or one with plenty of features. However, you can get a great toothbrush for only a few dollars. Any basic toothbrush will do the job. Just remember a few rules.
First, unless you have been told otherwise by your dentist, choose a toothbrush with soft bristles. Why? Because soft bristles will slide beneath your gums more easily, cleaning out debris and bacteria. Also, soft bristles are less likely than hard bristles to damage your gums.
Next, replace your toothbrush at least every 90 days. Do not hesitate to buy a new toothbrush even sooner if yours shows signs of wear such as frayed bristles. Some toothbrushes come with indicators on the bristles that will let you know when it’s time to exchange it for a new one.
2. Store it Properly
The best way to store your toothbrush is simple. Just store it upright in an area with good airflow. There is no need to store your toothbrush in mouthwash or another antiseptic solution. Rather, stand it upright so that it can dry and make sure it is not in an enclosed space like a medicine cabinet or cupboard. Also, for sanitation, make certain you keep your toothbrush at least one meter away from the toilet.
3. Use it the Right Way
Gentle and thoroughly are the correct ways to use your toothbrush. Rough, vigorous brushing will not get your teeth any cleaner and can actually harm your gums. The purpose of toothbrushing is to remove food particles and harmful bacteria. You can achieve these goals by brushing in a gentle, circular motion over every surface of your teeth. Also, try to angle your brush along your gumline to clean beneath your gums. Make sure you brush for at least two minutes each time.
If you have questions about toothbrushing or want advice on choosing a toothbrush, turn to your dentist. They are always ready to help with professional guidance.