A good dental care routine is the most important part of keeping your smile healthy. But how long and how often should you brush your teeth? Do you have to floss every day? How many times a year should you visit your dentist? Here are some tips to keep your pearly whites sparkling, clean and healthy.
Most dentists recommend that you brush your teeth twice a day. Now, if you’re wearing SmileDirectClub Invisible Aligners, you’ll want to brush after each meal or snack, before you re-insert your aligners. It’s not enough to do a quick, 20-second brushing, either. You should gently brush your teeth for a full 2 minutes. Use short strokes, back and forth against your teeth and gums, and around the surface of every tooth.
When it comes to your toothbrush itself, be sure you’re replacing it regularly. It’s recommended you get a new toothbrush 3 to 4 times a year—both because the bristles wear down and because your toothbrush picks up bacteria. Always replace your toothbrush after you’ve been sick. And store it upright—in a cup or a standing toothbrush holder—so it can dry out between brushings.
Yes, you really should floss your teeth once a day. Flossing is the only way to get plaque and food particles out from between your teeth that could otherwise harden into tartar and even result in cavities. If that’s not enough to motivate you, just think about it. Do you really want last Tuesday’s broccoli casserole stuck between your teeth next Tuesday? We didn’t think so.
When you floss, gently follow the curves of your teeth with the floss. Clean beneath your gum line, but be careful not to snap the floss against your gums. Flossing shouldn’t be painful. In fact, if you floss too hard you can damage your gums. However, you don’t want to be so gentle that you don’t remove the food between your teeth.
In general, it’s recommended that you go to the dentist twice a year, and it’s not just for the cleanings. Even if you take good care of your teeth and gums, you should still see your dentist regularly. Most dental problems don’t become visible or cause pain until they’re in their advanced stages. Your dentist can spot the early signs of cavities, gum disease, and even oral cancers.
Some people are at a higher risk of dental disease, and should visit the dentist 3 to 4 times per year. This can include smokers, pregnant women, diabetics, people who currently have gum disease, and people with a weak immune response to bacterial infection.
Straighter teeth are easier to clean and take care of than misaligned teeth. With SmileDirectClub, you can straighten your smile affordably, with treatment plans at just $1895 (versus $4800 to $7100 for adult braces). Get started on your new smile today with our free smile assessment and risk-free evaluation kit.