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Brush Up On Your Dental Hygiene

Proper oral hygiene benefits not only your dental health, but your overall health too! By following good dental care habits you can prevent plaque build up, bad breath, tooth decay, dental disease, and even lower your rise for heart disease!

Are you practicing good dental habits? Brush up on your dental hygiene with our basic tips towards a healthier smile!

Choosing Your Toothbrush

The most important tool towards a brighter, healthier smile is, of course, the toothbrush. Picking out a toothbrush can be fun, as they come in all different shapes, colors, and sizes, but it’s important to remember what you’re using it for: brushing.  Contrary to popular belief, the softer the bristle, the better.  Hard bristle can cause gums to bleed. It’s best to pick a toothbrush labeled ‘medium’, as ‘soft’ toothbrushes are used only in special circumstances (and with a dentist’s recommendation). The head of your toothbrush should compliment the size of your mouth. You want to be sure you can reach all of your teeth easily. It’s also great to consider a non-slip handle to prevent any kind of injuries.  Finally, always remember to replace your toothbrush every 1-3 months, and immediately after a cold or infection.

Proper Technique For Dental Hygiene

Are you brushing your teeth the right way?  Incorrect brushing methods will leave bacteria and build-up in your mouth! You want to be brushing with a toothpaste that protects against cavities and contains fluoride. Use no more than a dime amount of toothpaste, and brushing in a soft, circular motion. Be sure to remember these four tips for the best oral hygiene results:

  • brush at least 2x/day
  • brush for at least 2 minutes
  • don’t forget your tongue!
  • rinse your mouth and toothbrush thoroughly

Flossing: The Necessary Evil

While brushing your teeth with the proper toothbrush and technique is beneficial, it is not enough.  You may hate it, but flossing reaches the places your toothbrush can not. To really reap the benefits of oral hygiene, you have to floss. No study has proven if it is best to floss before or after brushing, but brushing after can pick up some loosened plaque that rinsing might miss. Floss every night, preferably before bed.  Floss types are generally unimportant, but waxed floss was invented to help slide in between teeth with less effort.  Grab a lengthy piece of floss, and wrap it a few times around one finger.  Slip the floss between your teeth using a gentle back and forth motion.  Go up and down on all sides of the tooth, and dip it under your gums a bit. After each tooth, be sure to move to a fresh piece of floss. Once complete, rinse thoroughly.


Want to take your oral hygiene to a new level? Think about what you are eating and drinking! It’s best to limit sodas, caffeine and alcohol, and to drink plenty of fluoridated water.

Learn more on the effects acidic drinks have on your teeth.

Sugar is one of the leading causes of tooth decay.  Snacks tend to be riddled with sugar.  Switch to healthy snacks like fruits, vegetables, and nuts.   Read labels for foods containing  calcium, vitamin D and vitamin B: they play an active role in maintaining a healthy mouth.

These are among the best oral hygiene tips around! Practicing proper oral hygiene at home can save you from one massive toothache, but in order to guarantee the most high quality care you need to remember to visit your dentist every six months.

Are you seeking a family dentist in Hoover, AL? We’d love to hear from you! Contact us today!