Brushing And Flossing Techniques

If you read any dental FAQ, you will find that relatively little amount of it is dealt with proper brushing and flossing techniques. It is usually mentioned that you need to have proper technique, but then no advice is given, it is always assumed that people know how to brush and floss; after all, it’s not that difficult a thing. The truth is that it is not a difficult thing, but you still need to be taught how to do it. So here we go, my take on proper brushing and flossing techniques.


Use plenty of toothpaste. Wet your toothbrush a little before applying the paste, as a wet thing will slide more easily than a dry thing, this is just common sense. When brushing, do not brush too intensively, or else you risk damaging your enamel and possibly the soft periodontal tissues. Make sure to brush everywhere, including your gums, nera your salivary glands, and your tongue as well (brushing the tongue is very important and almost everyone neglects to do it because it will make you gag, but bacteria live on the tongue, too!). When brushing, use circular motions. Up and down strokes will leave lines in your teeth over time, so use circular motions, they remove plaque better anyways. Use warm water, not too cold, not too hot. It is also important that you wash your toothbrush after you are done, as otherwise the bacteria living in our mouth can start to breed on your toothbrush. You may want to use scalding hot water to wash your toothbrush in the end.

Since almost all toothpaste is fluoridated, it is important that you leave the toothpaste on at the end of your brushing session. This means you can rinse as often as you like, and you should too, but at the end, when you are done and have rinsed, go one more round, and leave the froth in, as this will add fluoride to your teeth, strengthening the enamel. A tooth brushing session should take you around two minutes.



The same things apply for flossing as for brushing. Do not be too rigorous, or you can hurt your gums. When the floss gets dirty, just throw it away, do not reuse, as you risk contaminating an area that may be bacteria free. Put the floss in between the teeth, and then pop it back out, this will remove everything in the area with force. After you are done flossing, you should use some mouthwash to disinfect and to kill all of the dislodged bacteria. You can floss before or after brushing your teeth, it does not make a difference, as long as you use mouthwash in the end.

images: 1.