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Taking care of your teeth

Taking Care of your Teeth Between Cleanings at the Dentist

Tips for Taking Care of Your Teeth at Home

It is best to get a professional cleaning from your dentist every six months.  In between those cleanings, though, what is the best way to care for your teeth?  Certainly brushing and flossing are the most important things.  Let’s talk about how to do those properly.

Brushing for the Proper Amount of Time

Two minutes is the amount of time you should brush your teeth.  Time yourself to make sure you are reaching that goal.  Sometimes it is easier to walk around while you brush rather than staring at yourself in the mirror for two minutes.  Most of us tend to get impatient, so just take a walk.

Brushing with the Proper Amount of Force

Brushing should be done gently with a soft bristled toothbrush.  You do not need a medium or hard bristled toothbrush.  Brushing with too much force can lead to gum recession and root issues.

Flossing Once Per Day

Even with great brushing, there will still be plaque and bacteria between your teeth.  Cavities between teeth are more difficult to fix.  Make sure to pop some floss between your teeth at night to break up that plague.

Use Fluoride Toothpaste

Simply put, fluoride is the best thing that exists to prevent tooth decay.  Use it.

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Fluoride Toothpaste Prevents Decay

Avoid Sodas and Other Sugary Drinks and Foods

Our diet plays a large role in taking care of your teeth.  What we eat can fuel cavity bugs, the bacteria that cause decay.  Drinks and foods with sugar and acid send cavity bugs into full production.

Schedule Cleanings Twice a Year 

At Comprehensive and Cosmetic Dental Studio of Greenville, we are focused on the prevention of disease and fighting decay.  To schedule a cleaning, call us at 864-520-2942.  We have flexible hours to work with your schedule.

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Comprehensive and Cosmetic Dental Studio of Greenville

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Dr Andy Bullard recommends using an electric toothbrush, teeth whitening,

Is An Electric Toothbrush Really Better?

Is an Electric Toothbrush Really Better?

A lot of people ask “is an electric toothbrush really better?” Well, it is my belief that just about every adult patient (and every young patient in braces) should have an electric toothbrush. There are 2 reasons for this: time spent brushing and force of brushing. When I was a student in dental school I had a professor that said a manual toothbrush could be as effective as an electric brush if used properlyand technically that is true. What I have realized after looking at teeth for 20 years is that we are simply too impatient when we brush our teeth.  In the morning we’re in too much of a rush and in the evening we’re too tired to use a manual brush properly, and it is really difficult to change our habits.

Brush for Two Minutes

If you use a manual brush, time yourself brushing. The proper amount of time to brush is 2 minutes, at least 2 minutes. For many people this will seem like an eternity. One of the major benefits of an electric toothbrush is that most of them run for 2 minutes, so you turn it on and you know you are done when it turns off. Still, it can be a challenge to stand there and stare at yourself in the mirror and wait for the full 2 minutes, so I recommend walking around while you brush. Sometimes in the evenings, and when you are not so rushed getting out of the door to start your day, you may want to do 3 or 4 minutes of brushing, especially if you have a lot of fillings or crowns.  The dental work can hold bacteria more than tooth enamel.

Be Gentle on Your Gums

If you have issues with receding gums or have had gum grafts or have sensitive teeth, it is better to stick to the 2 minutes because you can actually brush too much (or rather too hard).  Not only can electric toothbrushes clear away bacteria well, they can also be more gentle. Most people brush way too hard, which can cause gum recession and even can wear away your teeth. With an electric toothbrush you just hold it against your teeth and gums and it does the work, removing the need for hard scrubbing.

Picking the Correct Toothpaste

Most toothpastes are abrasive, especially some of the whitening toothpastes. Most whitening toothpastes do not bleach your teeth, they make them whiter by scouring stains off. There was a study done with a toothbrush on a mechanical arm brushing against teeth for a couple of hundred thousand cycles. When only water was used there was no damage to the teeth, but when toothpaste was added large notches were worn in the teeth. Now, toothpaste is vital as a carrier for fluoride, but the plainer pastes and gels are better for you, especially if you have gum recession or sensitive teeth.

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Brush twice a day

Don’t Use Too Much Force

Many manual toothbrushes also have medium or firm bristles. Never buy anything but a soft bristled toothbrush. The brushing motion should not involve hard scrubbing. Brushing should be thorough, not forceful. Time spent brushing is much more important than heavy force. Again, brushing too hard is often a difficult habit to break, thus increasing the value of an electric toothbrush.

Start Shopping

So if you do not yet have an electric toothbrush, start checking them out. I think you’ll be pleased with the results! To schedule a checkup and cleaning, call our office at 864-520-2942 or request an appointment online.

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Checkup time!