Mall of Georgia Dentistry's Blog

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Two common toothbrushing mistakes March 19, 2013

Filed under: Dental health — Mall of Georgia Dentistry @ 9:39 am

These won’t likely surprise you, they’re pretty common sense points, but they’re worth reviewing every now and then.  Mistake 1 is not brushing your teeth often enough or long enough.  And mistake two?  Believe it or not, brushing too much.

Mistake 1 – not brushing often enough or long enough:

Softly brushing your teeth at least twice a day is recommended. ”Three times a day is best,” says Michael Sesemann, DDS, president of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.

With too much time between brushings, he says, bacterial plaque will build up, boosting the risk of gum inflammation and other problems.

Brushing should last at least two minutes, says Sesemann. Three minutes is even better, says Price.

Most people fall short of both time lines, says Sesemann. “It’s an arbitrary number, but it’s just so people take the time to clean all the surfaces.” He often recommends people divide the mouth into quadrants and spend 30 seconds a quadrant. Some electric toothbrushes include built-in timers.

To make the two minutes go faster, Sesemann says he ”multitasks,” fitting in a little TV viewing as he brushes.

So to recap, a minimum of twice a day, three is better, and at least two minutes for each brushing.  And brush gently.

Well if two is okay and three is better, doesn’t that mean more is always better?

Not necessarily.

Mistake 2 – brushing too much:

While brushing your teeth three times a day is ideal, more may not be, says Sesemann. “More than four toothbrushings a day would begin to seem compulsive.”

Excessive brushing could expose the root of the tooth to irritation, and that could in turn irritate the gums. Brushing vigorously can also erode tooth enamel. The trick is to brush very gently for two to three minutes.

And the key word again is “gently”.  Hope this review helps.  We’d be glad to discuss any of it with you if you have questions.

Mall of Georgia Dentistry



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