Do we really brush our teeth well? The answer is a definit no”. This is how it is considered, at least, by Caridad Arias, professor of Preventive Dentistry and Public Health at CEU San Pablo University. “Not only because of what we perceive in the consultations, but because 90% of the world population does not do a proper washing.”
Lack of knowledge about how to do it well and lack of motivation, due to not being aware of the negative consequences of neglecting teeth, are the main causes of poor brushing. Therefore, the consultations are full of problems that could have been avoided in most cases, mainly cavities and gum disease.
How to do it and in what way according to age
Ideally, washing occurs after each meal, at least four times a day. The brush should always move from the gum to the tooth and the entire process should last between two and three minutes.
Many dentists recommend that parents of children under the age of one start by cleaning their children’s gums by wiping them with a piece of gauze. From this age, when they already have their baby teeth and control their movements, they can already be given a brush to start, playing, but realizing that it is a healthy habit and they will have to repeat it several times at day. Subsequently, they will be given fluoride toothpaste, which is essential in children, and will make tooth enamel more resistant. At first, for lack of learning, they will tend to swallow the paste, but little by little they will know how to expel it with each rinse.
Young children will see how they have more and more teeth and the gap between them is noticeable. “From the age of 6, permanent dentition begins to appear and the teeth tend to be closer together,” says the CEU professor. It is then when the brush stops reaching all corners, making it a good age to start using, after each brushing, dental floss, which should no longer be abandoned to properly remove bacterial plaque.
Most people brush twice a day, “and if they did it properly, in principle it might be enough. But the frequency is not as important as the when, explains Caridad Arias. Before going to bed it is essential because while we sleep there is little secretion of saliva, which creates a favorable environment for the formation of caries. Worse still are the consequences of not brushing teeth at night in children, since generally in the afternoon they take chocolates, sugary foods and sweets. Parents should help their children to become aware of the importance of good brushing, first for health, and more now that there is a fashion to take care of the aesthetics of our smiles.,