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At Dayley Family Dental, we tell our patients to eat a balanced diet, maintain strong daily oral hygiene habits, and keep all bi-annual dental checkups in Boise, Idaho to keep your smile healthy for a lifetime of smiles. Since brushing your teeth is a basic oral hygiene essential, today we would like to share with you the do’s and don’ts of brushing!

– Don’t use hard-bristles when you brush. You only need soft bristles to loosen oral debris and plaque from beneath the gums and teeth.

— Don’t use a big toothbrush head that is unwieldy for your mouth. Do use a small toothbrush head that fits into all those hard to reach areas, like the back molars.

— Don’t keep your toothbrush around longer than the bristles are in good shape. Do change your toothbrush every 3-4 months, or when the bristles fray or lose their shape. Of course, do replace your toothbrush after you have a contagious illness, like a cold, to prevent recontamination.

— Don’t scour as you clean. Hard brushing can damage tooth enamel and gum tissue. Picture massaging your teeth while you work to remove oral debris and dental plaque.

— Do brush for at least two minutes, 2-3 times daily, even on those days you feel rushed. Your smile will thank you.

— Don’t share your toothbrush with anyone to avoid contamination. In addition, do store it upright to air dry in between uses to reduce bacterial growth.

— Don’t brush from left to right in a sawing motion. Do brush up and down with small, circular motions beginning at the gumline. Give all tooth surfaces a massage, including the back, top, and front, keeping your brush at an angle.

— Do pay attention to the gums. Bacteria collect along the gumline and gum crevices. Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gumline. Don’t neglect your tongue, since bacteria hang around there as well. Brush your tongue from back to front and finish up with a good rinsing.

— Don’t brush right after eating, and here’s why. The acids from your food can soften tooth enamel. During this time, brushing isn’t helpful. Wait 15-20 minutes after eating to give your saliva a chance to neutralize the acids before brushing. If that’s just not feasible, rinse your mouth thoroughly with water to help dilute the acids.

— At least once every day, use your full routine: brush, floss, and rinse your smile with an oral rinse to remove bacteria. Many patients like to do this at bedtime.

If you are ready to schedule a visit with Dr. Blake Dayley, please call us at 208-321-1141. Our entire dental team is here to help you with all your oral care needs.