We have all along known the importance ofdental hygiene, but could never whip up enthusiasm to pursue it religiously.
Blame it on the smattering of information available, we are left wondering from where to begin, and if one can ever do it the right way.
Aesthetic dentistry expert Dr Sushant Umre exchanges some invaluable notes on oral care.
Most appropriate way to brush your teeth
Proper brushing is essential for cleaning teeth and gums effectively. Use a toothbrush with soft, nylon, round-ended bristles that will not irritate teeth or damage gums.
Place bristles along the gumline at a 45-degree angle. Bristles should contact both the tooth surface and the gumline. Gently brush first, the outer tooth surface and then the inner surface of the tooth using a vibrating back and forth rolling motion.
Tilt brush vertically behind the front row of teeth. Make several up and down strokes using the front half of the brush. Place the brush against the biting surface of the teeth and use a gentle back and forth scrubbing motion. Brush the tongue from back to front to remove odour-producing bacteria.
You may want to supervise your children until they get the hang of these simple steps. Use a pea-sized dab toothpaste, preferably fluoride free if the child is below six years of age and take care that your child does not swallow the toothpaste.
The right tooth paste and toothbrush
Use a toothbrush with soft, nylon, round-ended bristles that will not irritate teeth or damage gums. One of the main things to look for in a toothbrush are its bristles. Most dentists recommend soft bristles, especially for those individuals who have sensitive teeth and gums. Both adults and children should use a toothbrush that has soft bristles. Toothbrushes with harder bristles are not more effective at removing plaque or stains.
Be sure to select a toothbrush head size that can easily fit into the mouth and is capable of brushing a row of teeth at a time. With this in mind, be sure to select a toothbrush with a very small head for a very young child.
Toothbrushes should be replaced about every three months or earlier if the bristles begin to look worn or frayed (bristles that fan out or spread is a sign that it is time to get a new toothbrush).
After consulting with your dentist or hygienist about your oral health's greatest needs, look for products within that category (for example, within the tartar control brands or within the desensitizing toothpaste brands). Always pick a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride toothpastes have been shown to prevent cavities, but in children under six years of age it can be avoided as they have a tendency to swallow it.