Brushing and flossing are the most important aspects of oral care. This statement is both true and false. While brushing and flossing twice a day are very important to the overall health of your mouth, you could actually be doing more damage than good. So many Americans think that by just brushing and flossing their teeth their mouth will stay healthy, but people do not always know the right way to take care of their oral health. Your Smithville dentist at Smithville Family Dentistry can help you understand where in your oral hygiene routine you can improve.

Proper oral hygiene is important, not only for the health of your mouth and teeth, but to the overall health of your body. Here are some of the most common oral hygiene mistakes and ways in which you can fix them:

  • Brushing Too Often: Some people tend to brush their teeth every time they eat. Brushing should only be completed after each major meal; breakfast, lunch, and dinner – at most.
  • Brushing Immediately After Eating Or Drinking: Teeth and gums are at their most susceptible up to 30 minutes after eating or drinking. The acidic nature of some foods and drinks can weaken enamel causing increased erosion when brushed. Saliva and pH balanced drinks will help get the pH of your mouth back to normal. Try not to brush teeth until at least 45 minutes after eating or drinking any major meal.
  • Brushing Too Long: Brushing in excess of two minutes can begin to breakdown the enamel of your teeth. Your Smithville Dentist recommends brushing for only two minutes. Set a timer to help you brush for the proper amount of time.
  • Brushing Too Hard: Teeth are strong, but sometimes the enamel can be weakened by the foods we eat and the drinks we consume. Gums are very sensitive and can be damaged when brushing too hard. Brushing too hard may erode enamel that has been weakened due to acids, or it can push back gums which exposes the root of the tooth.  
  • Medium Or Hard Toothbrushes: Medium/hard bristled brushes can etch the surface of the teeth or cause damage to the gums. Purchase only soft or extra soft bristled brushes.
  • Only Brushing Teeth: Harmful bacterial lives (and thrives) elsewhere in your mouth. When sticking strictly to the enameled areas of your mouth will not take care of the bacteria forming on other surfaces. Always brush all surfaces of your mouth, and floss in between teeth.  
  • Skipping Water: Water is a necessary substance to keep our entire bodies healthy. Water also helps rid the mouth of food particles that can become breeding grounds for bacteria. Proper hydration is also vital for proper saliva production and health of the body.
  • Skipping Visits: Don’t assume that brushing and flossing twice a day is enough to keep your mouth as healthy as possible. Your Smithville Dentist at Smithville Family Dentistry is the expert when it comes to oral care. Plaque, tartar, and other problems will be resolved during regular visits with your dental professional.