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  • Healthy Teeth for Life: 10 Tips for Families

    Keep a Sparkling Smile From Childhood to Old Age

    There are so many good reasons to keep your family’s teeth and gums healthy. Their sparkling smiles. Being able to chew for good nutrition. Avoiding toothaches and discomfort. And new research suggests that gum disease can lead to other problems in the body, including increased risk of heart disease.

    Happy-family-of-four-smiling-300x135In fact, most experts agree that almost all tooth decay and most gum disease can be prevented with good oral hygiene. We’re talking about taking a few minutes each day to brush and floss. That’s not a lot in return for a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

    Fortunately, there are simple ways to keep teeth strong and healthy from childhood to old age. Here’s how:

    1. Start children early. Once that first tooth appears usually around six months you should begin a child’s dental care. Teeth can be wiped with a clean, damp cloth or a very soft brush. At about age 2, you can let kids try brushing for themselves — although it’s important to supervise. Start early and avoid your child being part of the 50% of children between the ages of 12 and 15 who have cavities.

    2. Seal off trouble. Permanent molars come in around age 6. Thin protective coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth can prevent decay in the pits and fissures. Yet only one in three U.S. kids receives dental sealants. Talk to your dentist at Personal Care Dentistry.

    3. Use fluoride. Fluoride strengthens enamel, making it less likely to decay. Three out of four Americans drink water that is fluoridated. If your water isn’t fluoridated (i.e. you drink bottled water), talk to your dentist at Personal Care Dentistry, who may suggest putting a fluoride application on your teeth. Many toothpastes and mouth rinses also contain fluoride.

    flossbrush4. Brush twice a day and floss daily. Gum disease and tooth decay remain big problems — and not just for older people. Three-fourths of teenagers have gums that bleed, according to the American Dental Hygienists’ Association. Also remember to change your toothbrush 3 to 4 times a year.

    5. Rinse or chew gum after meals. In addition to brushing and flossing, rinsing your mouth with an antibacterial rinse can help prevent decay and gum problems. Chewing sugar-free gum after a meal can also protect by increasing saliva flow, which naturally washes bacteria away and neutralizes acid.

    6. Block blows to teeth. Most school teams now require children to wear mouth guards. But remember: unsupervised recreational activities like skate-boarding and roller-blading can also result in injuries. Your dentist can make a custom-fitted mouth guard.

    7. Don’t smoke or use smokeless tobacco. Tobacco stains teeth and significantly increases the risk of gum disease and oral cancer. If you smoke or use chewing tobacco, consider quitting. Counsel your kids not to start.

    8. Eat smart. At every age, a healthy diet is essential to healthy teeth and gums. A well-balanced diet of whole foods — including grains, nuts, fruits and vegetables, and dairy products — will provide all the nutrients you need for healthy teeth and gums. Some researchers believe that omega-3 fats, the kind found in fish, may also reduce inflammation, thereby lowering risk of gum disease.

    images-of-pop9. Avoid sugary foods. When bacteria in the mouth break down simple sugars, they produce acids that can erode tooth enamel, opening the door to decay. Sugary drinks, including soft drinks and fruit drinks, pose a special threat because people tend to sip them, raising acid levels over a long period of time. Sticky candies are another culprit, because they linger on teeth surfaces.

    10. Make an appointment. Most experts recommend a dental check-up every 6 months — more often if you have problems like gum disease. During a routine exam, your dental hygienist will remove plaque build-up that you can’t brush or floss away and look for signs of decay. They will also look for early signs of oral cancer, wear and tear from teeth grinding, and signs of gum disease.

    SOURCE: WebMD

  • Tips to Help Your Child Avoid Cavities from Their Baby Bottle

    Here are nine tips for baby bottle usage to help you keep your little one free of cavities.

    Avoid Sugary Beverages

    Sports drinks and fruit juices are packed with sugar and are not recommended for your baby’s bottle. That’s because lots of sugar leads to tooth decay and can create a host of dental problems as their baby teeth start to show. Plus, cavities in your baby’s teeth can sometimes create problems in their new adult teeth when they start to appear.

    Be Sure to Wipe Their Mouth After a Meal

    Fifteen minutes after each liquid or solid meal, wipe out your baby’s mouth with a clean, damp cloth. This will remove sugar and residual food and beverage than can increase the chance of cavities.

    Beware the Bedtime Bottle

    A bottle at bedtime might seem like a good idea for an infant, but it can negatively impact their teeth and gums. The sugar in formula, breast milk and milk can lead to infection if a bottle is regularly given to a child at bedtime. That’s because you won’t be able to wipe out your child’s mouth before they go to sleep, so that sugar will stay in their mouth all night. Try to develop a routine at bedtime that doesn’t involve a baby bottle, or if it does, use water in the bottle.

    Encourage a Drink Before Bedtime

    Encourage your child to develop a routine that involves them taking a long drink before they go to bed. This will help them avoid wanting a bottle at bedtime.

    Skip the Microwave

    Don’t heat a formula-filled baby bottle in the microwave. Granted, it’s more convenient and quicker, but your microwave won’t heat the formula evenly and may produce formula too hot for your baby to drink. Also, the plastic in your baby bottle may be damaged from the heat produced by the microwave.

    Use Warm Water to Heat

    Your best approach to warming a baby bottle is to use a pot on the stove filled with water. Be sure to use a pan that will allow you to completely cover the baby bottle with water. Use a low to medium setting, warm the water for five minutes, then put the baby bottle in the warm water and heat for up to two minutes. Squeeze a drop on the inside of your forearm before giving the bottle to your infant – it’s a good way to check the formula’s temperature.

    Walking and Baby Bottles Don’t Go Together

    Avoid letting your child walk around while drinking from a baby bottle. They are bound to fall when they are learning to walk, and a fall with a bottle in their mouth can result in a facial injury.

    Lidless Cups Should Be the Goal

    Around the time your child begins to walk (generally 12 to 18 months) is when you should start to wean your child off their bottle. Start by having them drink from a sipping cup at mealtimes, or even from a cup without a lid. There’s bound to be a good deal of spilled liquids initially, so start with water (or a beverage without sugar) because it’s easy to clean up.

    Regular Check Ups

    The #1 way to help your child avoid tooth decay is by making sure they see a dentist before they turn one. It’s important to have your child become relaxed about going to a dentist. It will make their check up every six months much easier and set them up for a lifetime of good oral health.

    Source: Healthychildren.org

  • What Do Bones, Ox Hooves and Burnt Eggshells Have in Common? Ingredients for Toothpaste!

    Group of broken egg shells isolated

    Have you ever wondered what people in ancient civilizations used for toothpaste? It certainly wasn’t the convenient tube of good-tasting fluoridated gel that we now put on our toothbrushes.

    Ancient toothpastes were used to treat some of the same concerns that we have today keeping teeth and gums clean, whitening teeth and freshening breath.

    Egyptians are believed to have started using a paste to clean their teeth around 5000 BC, before toothbrushes were invented. Ancient Greeks and Romans are known to have used toothpastes, and people in China and India first used toothpaste around 500 BC.

    The ingredients of ancient toothpastes were however very different and varied. Ingredients used included a powder of ox hooves’ ashes and burnt eggshells, that was combined with pumice. The Greeks and Romans favored more abrasiveness and their toothpaste ingredients included crushed bones and oyster shells. The Romans added more flavoring to help with bad breath, as well as powdered charcoal and bark. The Chinese used a wide variety of substances in toothpastes over time that have included ginseng, herbal mints and salt.

    The development of toothpastes in more modern times started in the 1800s. Early versions contained soap and in the 1850s chalk was included. Betel nut was included in toothpaste in England in the 1800s, and in the 1860s a home encyclopedia described a home-made toothpaste that used ground charcoal.

    Prior to the 1850s, ‘toothpastes’ were usually powders. During the 1850s, a new toothpaste in a jar called a Crème Dentifrice was developed and in 1873 Colgate started the mass production of  toothpaste in jars. Colgate introduced its toothpaste in a tube similar to modern-day toothpaste tubes in the 1890s.

    Until after 1945, toothpastes contained soap. After that time, soap was replaced by other ingredients to make the paste into a smooth paste or emulsion – such as sodium lauryl sulphate, a common ingredient in present-day toothpaste.

    In the second half of the twentieth century modern toothpastes were developed to help prevent or treat specific diseases and conditions such as tooth sensitivity. Fluoride toothpastes to help prevent decay were introduced in 1914. Toothpastes with very low abrasiveness were also developed and helped prevent the problems caused by overzealous brushing.

    The most recent advances in toothpastes have included the development of whitening toothpastes, and toothpaste containing Triclosan, which provides extra protection against caries, gum disease, plaque, calculus and bad breath.

    Toothpastes today typically contain fluoride, coloring, flavoring, sweetener, as well as ingredients that make the toothpaste a smooth paste, foam and stay moist.

     

  • Gingivitis Is Not a Word You Want to Get to Know

    guy-with-tooth-painThis Form of Periodontal Disease Can Lead to Inflammation and Infection – and Worse

    Gingivitis is a word that many people have heard, but not a lot of people know what it is or why you don’t want it in your mouth. Why? Because gingivitis is a form of periodontal disease that produces inflammation and infection that destroys the tissues that support the teeth, including the gums, the periodontal ligaments, and the tooth sockets (alveolar bone).

    Gingivitis is due to the long-term effects of plaque deposits on your teeth. Plaque is a sticky material made of bacteria, mucus, and food debris that develops on the exposed parts of the teeth. It is a major cause of tooth decay.

    If you do not remove plaque, it turns into a hard deposit called tartar (or calculus) that becomes trapped at the base of the tooth. Plaque and tartar irritate and inflame the gums. Bacteria and the toxins they produce cause the gums to become infected, swollen, and tender.

    The following raise your risk for gingivitis:

    • Poor dental hygiene
    • Certain infections and body-wide (systemic) diseases
    • Pregnancy (hormonal changes increase the sensitivity of the gums)
    • Uncontrolled diabetes
    • Misaligned teeth, rough edges of fillings, and ill-fitting or unclean mouth appliances (such as braces, dentures, bridges, and crowns). Use of certain medications, including phenytoin, bismuth, and some birth control pills

    Many people have some amount of gingivitis. It usually develops during puberty or early adulthood due to hormonal changes. It may persist or recur frequently, depending on the health of your teeth and gums.

    What Are the Symptoms of Gingivitis?

    • Bleeding gums (blood on toothbrush even with gentle brushing of the teeth)
    • Bright red or red-purple appearance to gums
    • Gums that are tender when touched, but otherwise painless
    • Mouth sores
    • Swollen gums
    • Shiny appearance to gums


    How Do You Treat Gingivitis?

    The goal is to reduce inflammation. The best way to do this is for your dentist or dental hygienist to clean your teeth twice per year or more frequently for severe cases of gum disease. They may use different tools to loosen and remove deposits from the teeth. Careful oral hygiene is necessary after professional tooth cleaning. Any other related illnesses or conditions should be treated.

    How Do You Prevent Gingivitis?

    Good oral hygiene is the best way to prevent gingivitis. You should brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a day. Ask your dentist or dental hygienist at Personal Care Dentistry to show you how to properly brush and floss your teeth.

    Special devices may be recommended if you are prone to plaque deposits. They include special toothpicks, toothbrushes, water irrigation, or other devices. You still must brush and floss your teeth regularly. Antiplaque or anti-tartar toothpastes or mouth rinses may also be recommended.

    Regular professional tooth cleaning is important to remove plaque that may develop even with careful brushing and flossing. Personal Care Dentistry recommends having your teeth professionally cleaned at least every 6 months.

    Source: ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

  • What Are the Top 10 Foods for Healthy Teeth?

    What you eat can be just as important to your teeth as brushing and flossing daily. In fact, certain foods and beverages will both keep your teeth in shape and provide them with the nutrition they need. You can’t get your original teeth back once you lose them, and imagine a life of eating and drinking minus your teeth.

    So the next time you are looking for something to eat or drink, pick a food or beverage that will make your teeth smile! Here’s list of 10 smile-producing foods to benefit your dental health.

    Fruit that is raw is a winner for your teeth because it reduces plaque and gives your gums a healthy massage. Fruits high in Vitamin C are the best because they keep our body cells together. If you are lacking Vitamin C, your gums will become tender and more easily develop gum disease.

    Sesame seeds dissolve plaque and help you build tooth enamel. They are also high in calcium, which keeps your teeth healthy along with your jawbone. It’s best to consume sesame seeds on bread or rolls.

    Vegetables are a wonderful foundation builder for oral health.  Sweet potato, pumpkin, carrots and broccoli are bursting with Vitamin A, which helps to form tooth enamel. Plus if you eat them raw you get a double dose of goodness, since raw vegetables will clean your teeth and massage your gums.

    Onions may have some smelly side effects, but they are loaded with bacteria-killing sulphur compounds. Don’t forget, it’s bacteria that does so much harm to your gums and teeth. If you like onions (and aren’t planning on going to a party), then eat them raw for maximum effect.

    Celery eaten raw is like nature’s toothbrush. It will clean your teeth and massage your gums. It also prompts your mouth to produce more saliva, which will neutralize the bacteria that creates cavities.

    Dairy products like yogurt and milk are a good choice to quench your thirst or have a healthy snack because they are low in acidity and sugar (and both of those lead to tooth erosion and tooth decay). Plus milk is full of calcium, which fortifies your teeth and bones.

    Cheese also has important benefits for your teeth and gums. Cheese is packed with calcium and phosphate which promotes healthy teeth and helps to balance the pH level in your mouth (which is a good outcome). It also helps you produce more saliva, rebuild important tooth enamel and kill bacteria that create cavities and lead to gum disease.

    Green Tea has earned a reputation for providing many benefits for your oral health. A major benefit of green tea is that is provides you with natural antioxidant compounds, which prevent plaque from accumulating. Plaque leads to cavities and bad breath. Plus some green teas have fluoride, which also helps reduce tooth decay.

    Proteins such as chicken, beef, turkey and eggs contain a ton of phosphorus. That’s a good thing since phosphorus combines with calcium and Vitamin D to create our bones and teeth.

    Water provides an array of good things. It hydrates your whole body (gums included), which is essential. But for your oral health, it helps clean your mouth so your saliva can nourish your teeth. When you rinse with water, it cleans your mouth so that your saliva can nourish your teeth, and it washes away food particles that can lead to cavities.

    Source: Dental.Net Print        

     

  • Tips to A Fresher Morning Breath

    Do you often wake up with breath that can clear a room? If you’re tired of bad breath in the morning – technically known as “halitosis” – we have six tips that can help you nip the problem in the (taste) buds!

    Reduce the caffeine.

    Caffeine inhibits the production of saliva, and saliva is the body’s natural method of cleaning your mouth. That means that caffeine-laden coffee, black teas, and energy drinks can dry out your mouth and allow oral bacteria to flourish. That leads to halitosis, since oral bacteria are the main culprit of bad breath. If you do need that jolt of caffeine in the morning, be sure to keep your mouth moist with lots of glasses of water to counteract the effects of the caffeine. 

    Quit the habit.

    Cigarettes are double trouble for your oral health. Not only do they stain your teeth, but they are purveyors of bad breath. The combination of chemical additives in the cigarette, along with the particles of smoke that stick to your throat and lungs, leaves your breath stale (and puts you at risk for lung cancer). Chewing tobacco is even worse for your breath. 

    Eat breakfast.

    Skip the cigarettes and caffeine – but be sure to sit down for a nutritious breakfast every morning. It doesn’t have to be complicated. An apple is great because of its water content and crunchiness. The combination helps eliminate bacteria that cause odors. Eggs or yogurt are also good choices because they boost the production of saliva and provide you with calcium and Vitamin D.

    Be more effective when you floss and brush.

    Even if time is tight in the morning, don’t rush your dental routine. Particles of food stuck in your mouth, gingivitis and oral bacteria can all contribute to bad breath and even more serious oral health issues. If you want to give yourself an even deeper cleaning than just brushing and flossing, you might add a tongue scraper to your morning routine along with gargling with a non-alcoholic mouthwash (alcohol dries out your mouth). And if you are really tight on time, be sure you have a travel toothbrush, tube of toothpaste, and floss at your workplace or in your car. 

    Pay attention to your sleeping habits.

    How you breath when you sleep could be a contributor to your bad breath in the morning. If you breathe through your mouth when you sleep, you’ll dry out your mouth and the lack of saliva will give halitosis-causing oral bacteria a boost. If your situation is severe, your dentist my recommend surgery. If it isn’t that severe, try having a glass of water, a throat lozenge, or a humidifier handy when you go to bed to keep your mouth moist and your breath fresh. 

    See your dentist.

    If you try the first five tips on our list and you’re still waking up with bad breath, then be sure to make an appointment to see your dentist. Your persistent morning halitosis may indicate that something more serious is going on with your oral health. It could be a cavity, an infection in a tooth, or gum issues. Or it could be something even more severe, such as liver or kidney issues or diabetes. Your dentist can see if the issue with your bad breath is due to a mouth issue or if it’s a more systemic problem. If it’s an oral health issue, they will be able to give you a personalized action plan to permanently get rid of the problem.

    SOURCES: American Dental Association, WebMD, Mayo Clinic

  • All Crowns Are Not Created Equal

    When Are Crowns For Your Teeth Necessary and What Are Your Options?

    You’ve probably heard about dental crowns. But do you know what oral health problems necessitate a crown and what types of materials you have to choose from when the crown is made?

    You will probably need a dental crown in the following situations:

    The damage to your tooth is so severe that it can’t be fixed by filling it with an amalgam or composite material

    Your tooth’s appearance is an issue and the placement of a crown can improve the shape, color and in some cases the alignment of the tooth

    Your tooth is weak due to decay

    You have a cracked tooth which a crown can protect

    Your dental bridge needs help being held in place

    You have a dental implant that needs to be covered

    So how is a permanent dental crown placed? Once a patient is evaluated and a decision is made to use a dental crown to address the patient’s oral health need, the tooth that will be receiving the crown is prepped. This involves removing any decay and preparing the tooth for its permanent crown. This may include fabricating a build-up if there is not enough healthy tooth surface left to hold and stabilize the new crown.

    An impression is taken and a temporary crown is fabricated after the tooth is prepped. The temporary crown is placed on the tooth while the permanent crown is being made in the lab. Once the crown is finished, typically 1 to 2 weeks, the patient will return to get the permanent crown cemented into place.

    What Materials Are Used for Crowns?

    Stainless steel crowns are prefabricated crowns that are used on permanent teeth primarily as a temporary measure. The crown protects the tooth or filling while a permanent crown is made from another material. They are often used with children’s primary teeth. The crown covers the entire tooth and protects it from further decay. When the primary tooth comes out to make room for the permanent tooth, the crown comes out naturally with it.

    Metals used in crowns include gold alloy, palladium, nickel or chromium. Compared with other crown types, less tooth structure needs to be removed with metal crowns, and tooth wear to opposing teeth is kept to a minimum. Metal crowns withstand biting and chewing forces well and probably last the longest in terms of wear down. Also, metal crowns rarely chip or break. The metallic color is the main drawback. Metal crowns are a good choice for out-of-sight molars.

     Porcelain-fused-to-metal dental crowns can be color matched to your adjacent teeth (unlike the metallic crowns). However, more wearing to the opposing teeth occurs with this crown type compared with metal or resin crowns. The crown’s porcelain portion can also chip or break off. Next to all-ceramic crowns, porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns look most like normal teeth. These crowns can be a good choice for front or back teeth.

    All-resin dental crowns are less expensive than other crown types. However, they wear down over time and are more prone to fractures than porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns.

    All-ceramic or all-porcelain dental crowns provide better natural color match than any other crown type and may be more suitable for people with metal allergies. However, they are not as strong as porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns and they wear down opposing teeth a little more than metal or resin crowns. All-ceramic crowns are a good choice for front teeth.

    Temporary versus permanent. Temporary crowns can be made in your dentist’s office, whereas permanent crowns are made in a dental laboratory. Temporary crowns are made of acrylic or stainless steel and can be used as a temporary restoration until a permanent crown is constructed by a lab.

    SOURCE: WebMD and American Dental Association

     

  • What happens when you get a dental crown?

    There are a lot of reasons why people might decide to go to the dentist or get dental treatment. Sometimes you will need emergency dental work, while other times it might be fine to simply visit the dentist every 6 months or so for a check up. Dental crowns can play an integral role in any sort of dental procedure that you might be looking to get. 

    Personal Care Dentistry is your ideal choice when it comes to trying to get the perfect dental crown fitted. This is something that can help to improve the aesthetic appearance of your teeth, and make you feel more confident. Here is what you need to know about getting dental crowns in Roseville. 

    What is a dental crown?

    A dental crown is pretty much a porcelain cap that covers an individual tooth in order to help improve or enhance the appearance and strength of the tooth. Crowns are an important way of being able to give a tooth structure and support, and they have other functions as well, such as lending support to bridges. If you’re looking for dental crowns in Roseville you’ll need to know what to expect, and there will generally be two appointments required when you are going to be getting a crown fitted. 

    What is the treatment?

    Another thing you need to know about is the actual treatment process itself and what this entails. You’ll generally want two visits in order to complete your dental crown, the first to take an impression of your teeth and set a temporary cap, and the second to actually fit the proper crown. Shaping and preparing the tooth happens on the first visit, and an impression is then taken, with a temporary cap used to protect the tooth. The impression is then sent to the lab where a customised crown is made, then on the second appointment this crown is actually fitted.

    What you should expect

    Dental crowns in Roseville can be fitted at Personal Care Dentistry, and there are a few things you should expect from this treatment. Once you have had a new crown fitted you can expect to feel some sensitivity, mild discomfort, and mild pain when chewing or following a change of temperature. If you want to keep the crown for as long as possible, it is important that you make sure you observe the right level of oral hygiene, and that you focus on trying to keep your teeth as clean and tidy as possible moving forward. If you live in Roseville, Minnesota and you are looking to get dental crowns fitted, come down to our practice and let’s get started!

    As you should expect, getting a dental crown fitted is an important process, and there is a lot you need to think about here. Make sure you head to our practice and meet with our team to discuss your options when it comes to getting a dental crown. At Personal Care Dentistry, we are able to give you the perfect crown fitting procedure that will help you to improve your life moving forward right now. 

  • When should I consider veneers?

    Looking after your teeth is so important, and there are a lot of things that you can do to achieve this. One of the biggest factors to keep in mind when it comes to improving your teeth is to consider the aesthetics of how they come across. Taking care of your teeth is as much about improving and maintaining the appearance of the teeth as it is about working on the strength of the teeth.

    And many of our patients in Roseville, Minnesota, get in touch with us about veneers. Now, in order to fully realise the perfect mouth of teeth, it is important to make sure you at least understand what veneers are and how they can help. So, check out our guide to veneers, and why you should consider them as soon as possible.

    What are veneers?

    Veneers are simply layers of material that are placed over teeth in order to protect them or enhance their appearance. Veneers are generally available in two different types of material, and they are composite, and dental porcelain. Now, depending upon the budget you have, and the style you’re looking for, either of these options are a great choice for you. Composite veneers typically last for around 4 years before replacements need to be considered, while porcelain veneers can last up to a whopping 15 years! 

    Why should you consider veneers?

    There are plenty of reasons why people might consider veneers, and, if you are seeking veneers in Roseville, there is a good bet that you have your own reasons for this. One of the biggest reasons for people wanting to get veneers fitted is to improve the visual appearance of their teeth. Teeth that have gaps, cracks, stains or a misshapen are all perfect contenders for veneers. These are a wonderful way of getting the beaming, million-dollar, Hollywood smile you’ve always wanted. But, more than just a form of aesthetic improvement, veneers can also be used to protect and look after teeth as well.

    How we can help

    We have a skilled and qualified team of experts ready to fit veneers in Roseville and the surrounding areas, and this is something you should consider. We have a process designed to help fit your veneers in the most comfortable way possible. We buff and shape the existing teeth and then make an impression. We choose the right color, get the adhesive ready, and fit the veneers for you. No anaesthetic is used, and this is a process that is typically as comfortable and painless as possible. 

    Get in touch with Personal Care Dentistry, and choose the perfect veneers to help improve your smile and your self-confidence. If you want excellent veneers in the Roseville, Minnesota area, you should call us and drop by our practice to talk about your options. Our team is always on hand to help you understand the process and to work toward getting the treatment you want right now. Take the right steps to help improve your life as much as possible, and veneers are one of the best ways you can do this.

  • 7 Tips to Help You Choose the Right Toothbrush

    You’ll spend more than 1,500 hours during your life brushing your teeth if you’re brushing two times per day (and two minutes per time). So it’s kind of important for you to choose the right type of toothbrush if you’re going to be that “close and personal” with this bristly tool!

    We have 7 tips below to help you enjoy your toothbrushing and to make the two minutes twice as day as impactful as possible on your oral health.

    Buying a New Toothbrush: You should be switching to a new toothbrush as soon as the bristles on your current one start to fray or look worn. Figure that will happen about every 90 days if you are brushing twice a day for two minutes per brushing. Also, if you’re ill, toss your current toothbrush. Those germs from your illness can stick to the head of your toothbrush and make you ill again. 

    Soft is Safe for Bristles: Soft is the way to go when it comes to the bristles on your toothbrush and the way you brush. Toothbrush heads with stiff bristles can actually damage your gums and teeth. The stiff bristles cause your gum tissue to recede from your teeth, exposing the root and leading to increased sensitivity to hot or cold food and beverages. In addition, the hard bristles can scratch the enamel on your teeth, exposing them to plaque (which causes cavities).

    Head Shape Is Important: Be sure to take into account the shape and size of a toothbrush’s head when you are choosing a new one. You should be able to easily brush your back molars with the toothbrush head, and the toothbrush should be comfortable in your mouth when you are brushing.

    Get A Grip on A Good Handle: Comfort is the key here, since you’ll be using your toothbrush twice a day. The handle of the toothbrush should be comfortable to hold, and long enough to reach all areas of your mouth. Also, be sure your toothbrush handle is wide enough for you to get a firm grip so it doesn’t slip while you are brushing.

    Don’t Be Cheap: Buying a dozen no-name toothbrushes at a big-box store might seem like a steal for your pocketbook, but the real steal is from your oral health. If you purchase a toothbrush from a manufacturer you’ve never heard of, can you be sure the materials used to make the toothbrush are safe? Will they actually help your oral health or hurt it? Invest in a recognized brand for the best oral health care.

    Make It ADA: Be sure to buy toothbrushes with the ADA (American Dental Association) Seal of Acceptance on the packaging. The ADA only awards its Seal if a company can prove through scientific evidence that its toothbrush is safe – and effective.

    Is Color Important: If you consider the color of your toothbrush a big deal, then be sure to buy a color you adore. You’ll be spending time twice a day holding that toothbrush, so the happier it makes you, the better!

    Sources: The American Dental Association (ADA)