June 05, 2018

Oral Health Tips from the Mouths of Dental Hygienists

Your dentist’s name may be up on the wall or on the outside sign at the dental office, but the hygienists are the ones on the front lines doing a lot of the heavy lifting…err, cleaning, and have a lot of great advice to give to help keep your mouth in check.
They see a lot of teeth during a typical week, along with every problem in the book, so that’s why you should follow their advice—especially since it’s National Dental Hygienists Week. Here are seven pieces of advice from hygienists to brush up on…

1. You’re Probably Holding Your Brush Wrong
KnowYourTeeth.com says you should be holding your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gums, not flat against them. Instead of going for long sweeping motions of the brush, you should make short tooth-length passes in a gentle fashion, adds the source.
Make sure you get all the surfaces of the tooth—the outer, inner, and chewing surfaces, it adds. “Use the tip of the brush to clean the inside surfaces of the front teeth, using a gentle up-and-down stroke,” suggests the source.

2. Be Gentler
Your instincts may be to brush harder to get those deposits off your teeth, but you’re actually doing more harm than good by doing so, according to many hygienists. Huffington Post notes that while your teeth can take the pressure, your gums can’t—and you could end up exposing roots by going too hard.
This can lead to tooth sensitivity and other issues. Some dental professionals suggest using an electric toothbrush to even out the pressure along your teeth and gums, but if you’re into conventional brushes, use a soft-bristled one as the harder varieties could actually damage your gums.

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