Brushing is the foundation of a quality home care routine. The most common recommendation is to brush twice a day. By far the most important time to brush your teeth is at night, right before you go to bed, making sure to not have anything except water after night time homecare is complete. Brushing in the morning is more for fresh breath. Sometimes I will have my morning coffee, and then brush my teeth right before leaving for work.
Why do I need to brush my teeth?
Most people think they brush their teeth to remove food debris, which is absolutely true, and a very important aspect of home care. However, very few people think about the bacteria in the mouth, and they don’t realize that disrupting and removing the bacteria is one of the main goals of brushing. Brushing also helps you remove plaque from your teeth. Plaque is basically the home for the bacteria, and if left long enough, can harden to a point that brushing will no longer remove it from the tooth surface. If this hardened plaque is not removed by a professional cleaning, you can start to see the plaque on an x-ray. And when you can visualize plaque (hardened food debris) on a radiograph, it has been there a very long time, and will be irritating to the gum, and damaging to bone levels.
How often should I brush my teeth?
You should brush your teeth at least twice a day. Night time brushing is the most important time. During the day, when brushing your teeth may not be a practical option, flossing to remove food from between your teeth after a meal would be a great idea so the oral bacteria are never allowed sufficient time to consume the sugary compounds from the meal.
How should I brush my teeth?
The best brushing routine involves using an ultrasonic brush with good technique for approximately 2 minutes. Do not just scrub aimlessly all around your mouth because you are likely to miss areas. Instead, concentrate on one quadrant at a time. Start upper right. Brush the side of your teeth facing your cheek, then get the tops, and then move to the side facing your tongue. Then move forward to get the front teeth. Repeat this process. Move to the upper left, drop down to lower left, then the lower front, and then finally the lower right. You can complete this in any order you wish, as long as you are consciously addressing each surface of every tooth. Hold the brush at a 45-degree angle to the gums to allow the toothbrush bristles to clear out any debris from around and under the gums.
What toothpaste should I use?
Dr. Trovato and Anthony recommend using any toothpaste that fluoride free, with no added chemicals. Many traditional toothpastes are loaded with toxins, sugar, and ironically, have a very acidic pH. There are so many neat products available now. I have seen products made of everything from clay and charcoal, to essential oils and probiotics. All of them are great, but our favorite product by far is any toothpastes that use a baking soda base. Baking soda is very alkaline, and brushing with it will help to neutralize any acids produced from the oral bacteria, and help the saliva maintain an optimal oral pH of 6-7. The one we carry is called Common Sense Tooth Powder that has baking soda, calcium, phosphate, xylitol, stevia, and some essential oils like mint.
Call Trovato Nutrition at (215) 293-0909 today if you have additional questions or if you would like to know more. Our dental team looks forward to helping you!