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6 bad brushing habits to break

16th May 2018

As far as difficult tasks go, brushing your teeth doesn’t seem like one of them. After all, you’ve been doing it since you were very little (we hope!) so by now the ‘rinse, toothpaste on, brush teeth’ routine is set on autopilot, right? However, as easy as the oral hygiene routine may be, it’s just as easy to fall into bad brushing habits, which put your oral health and smile at risk.

1. Brushing too hard

Be gentle when brushing your teeth and gums. While teeth are hard, gums are not and brushing with too much pressure can damage them and wear away the thin top layer.

2. Not brushing long enough

Slow down speed demons! We all know that brushing your teeth should take 2 minutes, but most people fall short of that. Divide your mouth into 4 sections and spend 30 seconds on each quarter and if you feel like you’re racing through too quickly, try listening to your favourite tune whilst brushing!

3. Brushing straight after eating

The acids in our food can leave our teeth temporarily softer than normal. Therefore if you brush straight after eating, you’re helping to erode the enamel away. Instead, make sure to wait at least 40 minutes after you’ve eaten before you brush and drink a glass of water or chew some sugar-free gum to help remove any traces of acid.

4. Don’t forget the gums and tongue

Give your gums and tongue some attention too, as both can harbour bacteria that can cause gum disease and bad breath. Floss (as well as brush the gum line gently) to help clean your gums and use a tongue scraper to help clean your tongue.

5. Storing your brush improperly

When you’re done brushing, keep your toothbrush upright and let it air dry in the open. Avoid keeping your toothbrush in a closed container, where bacteria have more opportunity to grow.

6. Keeping your toothbrush for too long

Change your toothbrush, or electric brush head every 3-4 months. After a few months, the bristles start to break down and aren’t as effective in cleaning your teeth. Set a reminder on your phone every few months to pick up a new toothbrush on your next shop!

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