Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about teeth hygiene
Q. How many times should I brush my teeth?
Twice a day is the recommended number. Avoid excessively brushing your teeth as it could damage your gums.
Q. When should i brush my teeth?
Brush your teeth when you wake up, that’s before you munch on anything. And before you go to sleep. (Have dinner 2-3 hours before bed). Avoid brushing teeth immediately after meals. Eating meals leads to a period of acid attack when teeth loose minerals(demineralization). At the end of the meal or snack the acid is buffered my saliva and the mineral loss stops and reverses under favourable conditions(remineralization). Brushing two times a day with fluoride toothpaste allows you to safely have five meal moments per day.
Q. For how long should i brush my teeth?
2-3 minutes of brushing are good enough.
Q. When should i see a dentist?
Biannually is recommended. That’s two times in an year. This helps the dentist clean your teeth and also intervene if they find or predict a problem. Depending on your dental status, a dentist might recommend more regular visits.
Q. How do dental caries occur?
They occur due fermentation of dietary carbohydrates by plague bacteria to acid. The acid produced causes demineralization of teeth. If demineralization is more than remineralisation (as explained above) then dental caries develop. dental caries are also what commonly people call tooth decay.
Q.What about mouthwash?
Not recommended for routine use. Use only under prescription by a doctor or a dentist. This is because they interfere with the normal flora of the mouth ( normal balance of bacteria. ) proper brushing if teeth with fluoride toothpaste is enough for proper dental hygiene.
Q.What about flossing?
Dentist’s have found flossing beneficial. You can floss as frequently as one a day.
Q. How about my child’s dental care?
Encourage brushing of teeth for children as soon as possible. Discourage thumb or finger sucking or prolonged use of pacifiers. This habits distorts teeth arrangement and gets worse with time. Ensure you remove milk teeth in time.
● Keep your toothbrush in a hygienic place. Preferably a dry place. (Avoid the bathroom due to the moist atmosphere).
●Change your toothbrush after every 3 months.