Think of the visit to the hygienist, in the same way that a Ferrari owner would think about their car being serviced. After service, they won’t be driving their recently serviced Ferrari through the woods!
Once the hygienist has carried out her treatment, we need to make sure that the home care maintains that optimal level of health.
Use a toothpaste with at least 1350ppm fluoride.
If you use a manual toothbrush, hold the brush on the side of your top teeth on one side, angling the brush at roughly 45’ so some of the bristles are in between the gum and the tooth, and perform gentle circles, moving from the back of the mouth to the front, and repeat on the other side.
Repeat for the bottom teeth.
Next do the same, but now on the inside part of your teeth, top and bottom.
To finish, brush the biting surfaces of your teeth, trying to get into all the little grooves your teeth have.
This should take no longer than 2-3 minutes.
What about an electric toothbrush?
Electric toothbrushes are far superior to a manual toothbrush. They can clean up to twice as much plaque away from your teeth. I usually recommend an electric toothbrush with a round, oscillating head.
You place them on your teeth as you would a manual toothbrush, but instead of moving the brush around your teeth, you move the brush slowly across the surfaces of your teeth (trying to maintain that 45’ angle) allowing the brush to do all the work
Wrap around 30cm of floss around your index fingers, and pull it tight. Place it in the space between two teeth and press against one of your teeth. Take it down under the gum-line, along the root of your teeth, pull it tight against that tooth and pull up. This action will clear the plaque sticking to that inside surface of the tooth.Place the floss back into that same space and repeat against the adjacent tooth. If dexterity or access is a problem, try using a floss pick.
Another method of cleaning in between teeth, are the use of inter-dental brushes. They are sometimes easier to use, especially at the back of the mouth, and better in slightly bigger spaces.
Your hygienist will discuss the appropriate size brush (or brushes) for your teeth.
You gently insert the brush in between the teeth at gum lvel, turning slightly.
Once inserted, gently move the brush backwards and forwards a few times, removing the plaque and debris.
Rinse the brush with water after use.
No matter how good you brush, you’ll never be able to remove bacteria between the teeth and under the gums without flossing or inter-dental brushes.
Mouthwashes are a great addition to gum and teeth health, but they are not a substitute to correct brushing. Mouthwashes contain ingredients which reduce the effectiveness of plaque to stick to your teeth and can help prevent further decay.
They also help with bad breath.
Administer the appropriate amount into a cup (the bottle cap usually indicates how much to use). Swish it around your mouth for at least 30 seconds and gargle for a few seconds after.
Spit out the mouthwash.
Try not to rinse with any water afterwards, as this will negate the benefits of the mouthwash.
Every single mouth is different. So for advice unique to you, call the surgery on 01562 822653 and arrange a visit with either Leanda or Neelam.