When you start to become independent as a child, one of the first things you are allowed to try on your own is brushing your teeth. We, as a society, recognize how important caring for our teeth is to our overall health, but there are always ways to create even better habits. In today’s blog, your Ankeny, IA, dentist will share a few tips to help you brush your teeth better and more effectively so that you can enjoy a healthy smile for years to come.
Fluoride Is Important
At Dental Impressions of Ankeny, we know that new dental health products can be tempting, especially when they claim to be more natural or better for you than traditional options. However, these options often overlook a natural ingredient that has been proven to help fight cavities for decades: fluoride. Fluoride is a natural mineral that can be found nearly everywhere in nature, including in plants, rocks, water sources, and soil, and it is well known for its ability to keep away cavities and the need for dental fillings by making your teeth stronger and even rebuilding them after decay has begun. So, we always recommend that everyone in your family use a toothpaste that contains fluoride to give your smiles the best chance in the fight against cavities.
Choosing a Toothbrush
When choosing a toothbrush, there are three main things to keep in mind:
- Any toothbrush you choose should have the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval.
- Softer bristles are safer for your teeth and gums while still being able to clean your teeth thoroughly, so you should always choose a toothbrush with soft bristles.
- Brushing should be as enjoyable as possible, so you should choose a type of toothbrush you like and will actually want to use. Manual or electric is fine, as long as it keeps you using it.
Timing Yourself Helps
You probably already know that you are supposed to brush your teeth for two minutes. However, studies have shown that most Americans go against ADA recommendations, only brushing their teeth for around 45 seconds on average. While this may seem like enough time, it has been proven that two minutes gives you the optimal chance of cleaning your teeth as well as possible, so it is important that you time yourself while brushing. If simply using a timer on your phone doesn’t hold your interest, you can try listening and humming along to your favorite song until it hits the two minute mark! This will help you to keep your mouth healthy and decrease your chances of needing restorative dental work in the future.
Come In for a Professional Cleaning
Of course, a good dental health routine works best when paired with professional care from your dentist at your biannual checkups and cleanings. At these appointments, we can not only deep clean your teeth, but examine them for any trouble spots, allowing us to catch any potential issues early on. So, if it is time for your next exam, schedule an appointment by calling Dental Impressions today at (515) 965-0230.