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Know Your Numbers: Tooth brushing 101

Are you spending enough time brushing your teeth? Dental experts say you should devote two minutes, twice each day, to keep your chompers in top condition. Health Fair 11 shares other tips for good oral hygiene
Credit: bernardbodo
Make good dental hygiene a family matter. Brush your teeth twice each day.

Minneapolis, MN — According to the American Dental Association too many Americans are skimping on their oral care. The ADA is urging people to not give good dental hygiene the brush off.

Tooth decay affects people of all ages. Children are more prone to cavities, while adults 50+ are more likely to develop problems with the tooth roots. The damage is caused by plaque that builds up on the surface of teeth. Plaque bacteria interact with sugars and starches in food to create an acid which eats away at the tooth surface. Regular, thorough brushing breaks up the process and prevents decay from starting.

Be proactive

The ADA has some simple guidelines to follow to make sure your teeth, gums, and mouth are not only minty fresh, but healthy and clean too.

  • Brush your teeth twice each day for at least two minutes each time. The ADA says too many people rush the process.
  • Brush your teeth with gentle circular motions. Don’t scrub or use heavy pressure.
  • Remember to also brush your gums and tongue. Both can harbor unhealthy bacteria.
  • Replace your tooth brush every three to four months. Replace more frequently if the bristles become frayed.
  • Use a toothpaste containing fluoride.
  • Flossing daily removes plaque located in between teeth where a bush can’t reach.
  • Schedule dental visits every six months.

WebMD has compiled a list of common tooth-brushing mistakes. Find them here. https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/brushing-teeth-mistakes#1

Know Your Numbers

This information is provided by Health Fair 11 as part of its Know Your Numbers Campaign. Health Fair 11 is a non-profit organization that operates with the support of KARE 11 TV and UCare. Learn more at www.HealthFair11.org.

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