It’s National Dental Hygiene Month!

We couldn’t let October go by without talking about National Dental Hygiene Month! We want to discuss this topic because most news-related articles and our blog posts relate to body health, however there is rarely a focus on oral health. Oral hygiene is just as important as body hygiene, with the Mayo Clinic even calling oral health “a window to your overall health.” Poor oral health is linked to various conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease. The relationship goes both ways: diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s and HIV/AIDS can cause problems or exhibit symptoms in your oral cavity, while poor oral hygiene can also lead to serious conditions like heart infections or giving birth prematurely for pregnant women.

Good oral health is important for everyone! Although there are multiple ways to maintain good overall oral health, such as regularly seeing the dentist, flossing daily, eating healthy, or not smoking, we want to focus this blog post on how to brush your teeth properly. You are supposed to brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice daily, but do you know the proper technique for brushing your teeth? Here are some pointers to remember.

  • Make sure you are brushing with a 45-degree angle to where your gums meet your teeth.

  • When you brush your teeth, use “tooth-wide” strokes. Brush the front teeth, back teeth, and the “chewing surface”, which is the part of your teeth you use to bite and chew food!

  • It is important to keep your gums healthy as well! Brush along the gum line with gentle strokes.

  • Brush the backside of your front teeth with “up-and-down” strokes.

  • Remember to brush your tongue at the end! This can help your breath stay fresh and take out any remaining food particles in your mouth.

The ADA has also released some tips on motivating kids to brush their teeth. Check it out here!