Brushing your teeth: 6 mistakes we make every day

teeth brushing

Toothbrushing seems intuitive. We learn the basic gestures from an early age and reproduce them mechanically, without much thought. Yet in Switzerland, part of the population brushes their teeth incorrectly. In fact, there is a correct technique that should be applied on a daily basis for effective tooth brushing. HELVIDENT shares the most common mistakes to help you improve your oral hygiene.

#1 Use the wrong type of toothbrush.

Oral hygiene shelves are overflowing with toothbrush models. Naturally, we tend to choose hard-bristled toothbrushes, thinking they'll be more effective against stains and plaque. But you'd be surprised to learn that tooth enamel is a fragile material that requires special care. It's not a question of scrubbing a dirty surface in your home, but of gently cleaning your mouth. Dentists in Lausanne, Fribourg and Aigle recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush. They also recommend a flexible model with a rounded head to reach all parts of the oral cavity. Only then will brushing be complete.

#2 Forgot to replace toothbrush.

Your toothbrush doesn't last forever. The World Health Organization recommends brushing twice a day for at least two minutes each time. At this rate, the life of a manual or electric toothbrush is 3 months on average. Bristles starting to wear out? It's time to buy a new toothbrush. Your brush needs to breathe. We recommend storing it upright in a well-ventilated place. Don't store it in a cupboard, as moisture can cause mildew.

#3 Brush teeth in a linear fashion.

If the dental arches formed a straight line, rubbing them in a linear fashion would be enough to clean them. But this is not the case. Their surface is not homogeneous, and their shape varies between canines, incisors and molars. To brush your teeth effectively, you need to use circular movements, leaving no nooks and crannies untouched. Brush the outer and inner surfaces of all your teeth (upper and lower arch), as well as the chewing surfaces. To be effective, brushing should last at least two minutes. It should also be done twice a day. For complete oral hygiene, use dental floss or interdental brushes twice a week.

#4 Ignore gum and tongue hygiene.

When we talk about dental hygiene, we often forget that it includes cleaning the entire oral cavity. This includes the gums and tongue. You can therefore brush them gently to remove any food scraps and bacteria lodged there. Poor gum hygiene encourages the build-up of plaque. Plaque can develop in inflammation, gingivitis, or in disease, periodontitis. Don't hesitate to ask your dental hygienist in LausanneFribourg or Aigle.

#5 Brush teeth immediately after meals.

You've often been told that you should brush your teeth after every meal. What most people don't know is that you need to wait at least 30 minutes after eating or drinking to clean your mouth. So don't rush to the bathroom! Give your saliva time to clean your teeth, gums and tongue naturally. After eating or drinking, your mouth is acidic. If you add the abrasive substances in toothpaste, you'll encourage enamel erosion. So we advise you to be patient, for the sake of your teeth.

#6 Use unsuitable toothpaste.

Toothbrush and toothpaste go hand in hand. They form the perfect duo for good oral hygiene. That said, as with toothbrushes, there is a wide choice of toothpastes on the shelves. But don't rush into the first brand that comes along without a second thought. Just like skin type, each person's oral needs vary. Tooth sensitivity, yellow teeth, bleeding gums or tartar, there are products for every situation. So choose a toothpaste that meets your needs to improve your oral hygiene. There are even toothpastes for diabetics, toothpastes for pregnant women and, of course, toothpastes for children. 

Brushing your teeth is part of your daily hygiene routine, whatever your age. It cleans your oral cavity, eliminates food residues and bacteria, and fights plaque. In this way, you prevent cavities from forming, bad breath and gum disease.

HELVIDENT dental clinics welcome you in Fribourg, Lausanne and Aigle. We offer all dental treatments for children, adults and seniors. Don't hesitate to Contact us to make an appointment with one of our professionals.