How often should I brush my teeth?

Some people brush immediately after they eat each meal, some brush once a day when they wake up…while others feel they don’t have to brush their teeth daily. 

What’s your take on this? What do dental professionals recommend for optimum dental health when it comes to how often we should brush? Read on to find out!

Why is it important to brush your teeth?

Brushing our teeth really is essential to oral health. Each day a thin film called plaque builds on our enamel, it develops naturally on your teeth when bacteria mix with certain foods.

Brushing it off your teeth is one of the best ways to remove plaque and keep your mouth healthy. Flossing is also important to remove the plaque between teeth. 

If the plaque sits on your teeth, the harmful bacteria will start to decay your teeth and gums. 

How many times a day should you brush your teeth?

The short answer is: We should brush our teeth twice a day for two minutes!

The American dental association (ADA) recommends brushing your teeth at least twice a day. Some even prefer brushing 3 times a day, after each meal. 

Most people find the most suitable times are when they wake up in the morning and then before they go to bed in the evening. Brushing your teeth two times a day is a general recommendation for most people with normal health but can change for patients with specialized needs.

How to Brush

Flossing and brushing properly are important in keeping your teeth clean. Brushing your teeth for at least two minutes each time will allow enough time to circulate your toothbrush around the entire mouth. 

Take your time by using gentle short strokes up on each tooth, careful to brush the chewing surfaces, front, and back. Don’t forget to also brush your tongue!  

Be sure to teach your children proper brushing techniques until they can do it alone.  

What should you brush your teeth with?

You can use an electric or manual toothbrush to brush your teeth. 

Manual toothbrushes often have different strengths. Soft bristles work well for most to remove any food particles without irritating the gumline. 

An electric toothbrush works very well for children and people with dexterity issues and it can make brushing easier. Using fluoride toothpaste and alcohol-free mouthwash alongside brushing can also remove bacteria.

What can happen if you don’t brush?

If you don’t brush, well… it can result in a few painful conditions like:

  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Tooth decay (cavities)
  • Gum disease (gingivitis)
  • Periodontal disease (receding gum line) 

Your visit to the dentist

Despite your best tooth brushing, there are still some spots where plaque can hide. You could possibly begin to develop severe decay. 

Regular trips to the dentist can help you maintain a healthy smile. Your dentist can provide an x-ray to show if you’ve developed any decay and how severe it may be. 

Our experienced oral surgeons here at San Jose Oral Surgery are always happy to offer helpful tips so patients can keep their teeth nice and healthy between appointments. They also comprehensive dental care and dental services to help restore your dental health, like surgical extractions and dental implants.

We would be happy to evaluate your smile and give you a personalized plan. Schedule an appointment here on our website. 

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