16 Mar

London dentist tells patients brushing may not be enough

We are taught from a very early age that brushing our teeth is the most important way of making sure they are healthy and preventing conditions such as decay and gum disease. While it is true that brushing is the most effective way to stop decay, we must remember that it is not the only way, and judging by the number of cases of gum disease in the UK, it seems that many of us need to include other forms of protection.
Dentists recommend that we brush our teeth twice a day for three minutes. They also say however, that we should floss our teeth at least once a day. Brushing is great for removing the plaque from the flat surfaces of the front and back of teeth, but when it comes to the small gaps in-between and around the base of the tooth, the bristles of a regular toothbrush may be ineffectual.
Using dental floss after meals helps to remove plaque and bacteria from these small gaps. It also helps to remove food particles from between the teeth that can provide food for other bacteria in the mouth. Flossing helps to alleviate gums that are inflamed, which may create small pockets around the teeth, often the location of initial decay. As well as flossing, some dentists recommend using a tongue scraper. This, used once or twice a week, will help to keep the moist surface of the tongue free from bacteria and food particles. This will also help to keep breath fresh. Inter-dental brushes, with very small bristles are another way of making sure your mouth is as clean as it can be. If you are just brushing and are concerned your teeth are not as clean as they should be, make an appointment to see a London dentist to discuss how you could better care for your teeth.