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Huntington Family Dental Group
534 Shelton Ave, Shelton, CT 06484

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Brush Up on the Advantages of Proper Brushing

You’ve been brushing your teeth for so many years that you can probably do it half asleep at the bathroom counter, and probably sometimes do! However, repetitious activities often become automatic, so you may not be getting enough benefit from your oral hygiene regimen. Even though it takes only a few minutes to brush, floss, and rinse properly, we all tend to rush through it as much as possible.

Is It Really Important to Brush Your Teeth Regularly?

Brushing frequently, and well, is one of the best ways to keep your mouth healthy, which will also help keep your body healthy. If you have a problem, of course, you can always make an appointment with a dentist, but that can get expensive and inconvenient. A few simple techniques can help you maintain good oral health and good physical health.

How Does Unremoved Plaque Cause Harm to My Overall Health and My Teeth?

After you eat or drink, a sticky substance called plaque forms in your mouth. It’s the substance that makes your teeth feel fuzzy, and when it isn’t removed, it can contribute to decay and inflammation. This condition is called gingivitis, and it’s the beginning of gum disease.

When gingivitis remains untreated, it turns into periodontal disease, which can cause you to lose your teeth and ultimately destroy your jawbone and facial structure. Periodontal disease can cause heart disease, diabetes, pulmonary disease, and many other serious diseases. However, it may be prevented through a regimen of good oral hygiene that includes brushing and flossing.

Are There Certain Ways to Brush Properly to Ensure Healthy Teeth?

Brushing properly and frequently will help you to avoid gum disease, but you also need to floss and use an antibacterial mouthwash. Brush a minimum of twice each day and floss at least once each day. Use an antibacterial mouthwash before you go to bed so that bacterial residue doesn’t remain in your mouth overnight.

The American Dental Association recommends the following procedures to avoid gingivitis and keep your teeth and gums healthy:


  • Brush each tooth: Many of us assume that when we brush, we get all of our teeth. However, this isn’t necessarily factual. Some teeth, like molars, can be more difficult to reach, so they may not be adequately cleaned when you brush. If a tooth is sensitive, you may try to avoid brushing it, but sensitive teeth should receive extra attention. When a tooth is painful or sensitive, it can be due to inflammation or an infection. If the pain persists, you should consult your dentist in Shelton.
  • Brush at least twice each day. This ensures that the acids and bacteria from your food have less contact with your tooth enamel and gums, so there’s less likelihood of decay or cavities.
  • Tongue: Your tongue’s rough surface is the ideal hiding place for bacteria, but brushing your tongue at least once a day can remove any bacteria that are nestled in your tongue’s surface. It will also provide fresher breath.

Dental Visits

  • Checkups and cleanings: Even though your daily oral hygiene regimen may be unparalleled, you should still have regular dental checkups and cleanings. Your dentist can notice potential problems before they become major problems, so the American Dental Association advises that you have annual checkups at a minimum, and preferably, semi-annual checkups and cleanings.


  • Equipment: You should always thoroughly clean your toothbrush after each use. Make sure that it’s free of food particles and store it upright, away from other toothbrushes. Avoid storing it in a closed container because that encourages mold and bacteria to form. Storing it alone in an upright position so that it can air dry is the best.
  • Equipment replacement: Replace your toothbrush every three months or when the bristles become worn. If you’ve been ill, then replace your toothbrush immediately after you’re well.
  • Toothbrush choices: Your toothbrush should be sized to comfortably fit your mouth. The bristles should be soft enough that they won’t damage your tooth enamel but firm enough to remove plaque and food particles. Many dental professionals recommend battery-operated toothbrushes because they remove more plaque and bacteria and prevent more gum disease than traditional brushes. Ask your dentist for a recommendation.
  • Toothpaste: You have many choices when selecting a toothpaste, and the best one is primarily a matter of personal preference. However, make sure your toothpaste carries the American Dental Association seal of approval.

Flossing and Rinsing

  • Flossing: Flossing is as important as brushing because dental floss can access hard-to-reach areas that your toothbrush will miss. It doesn’t matter whether you floss before or after you brush as long as you floss. You should always floss before bedtime and when you wake up.
  • Rinsing: Conscientious brushing and flossing are essential to good oral health, but rinsing with an antibacterial mouthwash provides benefits as well. Particularly when you’re unable to brush or floss, thoroughly rinsing your mouth with an antibacterial mouthwash can remove residual bacteria that your toothbrush and dental floss may have missed.

Technique and Timing

  • Technique: When you brush, imagine that your mouth is divided into four quadrants and spend at least 30 seconds on each quadrant. Be sure to brush the insides and tops of each tooth as well as the outsides. Use gentle pressure and hold your toothbrush at an angle.
  • Motion: You can use either a short, back-and-forth motion or a circular motion, but either way, use gentle pressure so that you don’t damage your tooth enamel.
  • Timing: Some people prefer to brush first and some prefer to floss first. The order doesn’t matter as long as you do both. Make sure, though, that you brush for at least two minutes in addition to the flossing time so that you get your teeth as clean as possible.

Will Brushing Make My Teeth and Gums Healthy?

Correctly brushing your teeth can go a long way toward providing you with healthy teeth and gums. Combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle, brushing and flossing correctly can help your teeth last throughout your life. If you have questions or need more help, then contact your Shelton dentist.

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Huntington Family Dental Group

534 Shelton Ave, Shelton, CT 06484

(203) 916-1173