Brushing your teeth and flossing is probably something you’ve done since childhood. You’ve been caring for yourself for years – what could you be doing wrong? Unfortunately, many people make dental hygiene mistakes that could impact their oral health in the long term. That’s why we wanted to review a few of the more common errors and how you can avoid them: 

  • Not Using the Correct Brushing Technique 

If you tend to go back and forth as if you are filing a nail or you brush too hard, that could be doing more harm than good. Only brushing back and forth won’t give you a thorough cleaning. Brushing too hard could damage your enamel. You want to make gentle circular motions, angling your brush towards your gumline. Plus, make sure you brush for at least two minutes, the recommended length of time by the American Dental Association (ADA). 

  • Not Replacing Your Toothbrush 

You need to replace your toothbrush every three to four months. If you haven’t done that in a while, it’s time to get a new one. Otherwise, your bristles become matted down and won’t clean your teeth effectively. Plus, broken bristles can be too hard on your gumline. Whether you have a manual or electric toothbrush, you’ll want to choose one recommended by the ADA. They undergo rigorous testing to ensure the toothbrush gives you the most thorough cleaning. 

  • Skipping Your Flossing Routine 

Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon to avoid flossing in your daily oral hygiene routine. In fact, studies recently showed that only 68 percent of adults floss at least once weekly. However, you need to floss every day. The ideal time to do it is before you brush your teeth at night. Ideally, if you want to really up your oral care routine, consider flossing after every meal. 

  • Not Brushing Your Tongue 

You may not think to brush your tongue as part of your oral care routine. However, it’s important to clean, because it harbors a lot of bacteria. Ignoring it accumulate can lead to bad breath and transfer over to your teeth. You could increase your risk of facing other oral health problems. Make sure you do it after you’ve brushed your teeth. Start as far back in your tongue as possible and brush downward. If you have an easy gag reflex, one tip is to look at yourself in the bathroom mirror as you brush, so you don’t go too far back. 

  • Avoiding Dental Checkups 

If you haven’t had a dental checkup in a while, you’ll want to schedule yours right away. We’ll professionally clean your teeth, getting rid of all the plaque and bacteria you’ve missed at home. We do an exam for oral health issues, such as cavities or gum disease. By staying on top of problems as they arise, you’ll avoid more complications later down the road. 

Wondering about any other dental hygiene mistakes you might be making? Call Advanced Dentistry in Middlesex, NJ at 732-506-2876 or schedule online.