To combat tooth decay, the main hygienic rule is to brush your teeth , with a toothbrush and toothpaste , after each meal.In this way food residues are removed and bacteria cannot take root due to lack of nutrients .
If we all took care of our oral hygiene there would no longer be a need for a dentist, or almost. In fact, undergoing periodic check-ups is a very important rule. In this way the dentist will be able to judge the state of dental health by blocking the slightest hint of caries in the bud.
Choice of toothbrush
There is a very wide range of toothbrushes on the market, so wide that it often leads to disorientation of the consumer.
Among all the toothbrushes it is good to choose those with heads formed by distinct tufts and with rounded tips that manage to reach the depths of the interdental spaces. The diameter of synthetic fibers is normally between 0.20 and 0.25 mm ( medium hardness ).
It is advisable to periodically check the state of wear of the bristles. As soon as you notice bent and deformed tips, replace the toothbrush with a new one (at least once every two or three months).
Using the Toothbrush
Learning to use the toothbrush correctly helps preserve smile and wallet.
The bad habit of brushing your teeth with a strong and vigorous horizontal movement is of little help in the fight against tooth decay.
In this way the bacterial plaque is not completely removed but dragged from one tooth to another, favoring its nesting in the interdental spaces. The accumulation of plaque in these areas, in addition to being difficult to remove, facilitates the onset of tooth decay, tartar and gingivitis .
A too energetic movement will then tend to push the plaque against the gum, facilitating its deposit in this area.
Excessive mechanical stress on the collar can also cause major damage such as inflammation and gingival recession .
The correct method for cleaning the teeth involves movements perpendicular to the gums , not too energetic and with the toothbrush inclined at 45°. To clean the upper arch, it will therefore be necessary to proceed from top to bottom and vice versa.
While brushing your teeth, it’s a good idea to vary the angle so that the bristles can also penetrate the dental interstices and remove the plaque under the gum collar.
The cleaning operation must be repeated without haste also for the internal part , often dangerously neglected. Finally, it is good to pass the toothbrush over the teeth, especially over the molars and premolars in order to remove the plaque present between the intercuspid spaces (that kind of basin formed by the 4 tips of the tooth).
To be effective, these operations should not last less than 2 or 3 minutes and involve one tooth at a time without passing quickly from one tooth to another.
To know more:Toothbrush – How to use it
Its winning weapons are ease of use and comfort. The high-speed oscillating motion of the electric toothbrush ensures impeccable oral hygiene by removing bacterial plaque from teeth and gums. For those who do not have the dexterity necessary to carefully clean their teeth with a normal toothbrush, it can be a valid ally in the fight against tooth decay. Children may even find it amusing and may be encouraged to brush their teeth more often.
When buying it it is important to choose it well, in general the most advertised brands have a good quality / price ratio.
We recommend purchasing a rechargeable model, with an ergonomic handle and head included in the package. As with normal toothbrushes, the head should be replaced every 2-3 months
To know more:Electric toothbrush
Cleaning the lingual back has the task of removing the microorganisms responsible for halitosis . It must be carried out with special tools that can be temporarily replaced by the toothbrush. Thanks to the elimination of any food residues and microbes, sanitizing the tongue can also prevent dental caries and gum disease.
The cleaning operation must be carried out in depth since it is precisely the posterior areas of the lingual dorsum that contain the greatest number of bacteria. However, it must be considered that too deep a cleaning could give rise to a spontaneous action of rejection.
Cleaning is carried out by making the tongue protrude as much as possible from the mouth and inserting the tongue cleaner very deeply, which must be rubbed and slid back and forth for about a minute.
The use of this practice is recommended above all to patients suffering from halitosis even if, given its importance, it should be part of the oral hygiene operations of the entire population.
To know more:Tongue cleaning and mouthwash against bad breath
To remove deep caries and prevent the formation of tartar, a valid tool – often underestimated – is dental floss .
Its constant use allows you to remove the plaque that lurks in the interdental spaces . These areas, generally inaccessible to the traditional toothbrush, are an ideal refuge for the bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gingival inflammation. Although this tool has yet to fully return to Italian habits, its use is simpler than one might think and after a couple of applications you acquire the necessary skill to operate it correctly.
The dental floss must be inserted between two teeth, brought down to the gum and pulled outwards making it adhere well to one of the two teeth. The rubbing operation will then be repeated for the other side of the tooth and for all the remaining interstices. It is important to rinse your mouth well after cleaning, perhaps with mouthwash . This will eliminate the plaque removed by the floss which, otherwise, could settle back on the teeth.
When moving from one interdental space to another, it is advisable to rinse the section of floss used to remove any bacterial deposits.