We all know that brushing is an essential part of good dental hygiene and preserving our oral health, but did you know it’s possible to brush too much? Regular brushing helps to keep plaque from forming, keeps tartar at bay, and helps prevent the formation of cavities. Too much brushing, however, can actually have a detrimental effect on the health of our teeth. Overbrushing has been shown to wear away at the enamel and gums, actually promoting tooth decay. Below we discuss the details of proper brushing and how often you should be doing it.
Proper brushing involves both technique and consistency without excess
Using Proper Brushing Techniques To Achieve Good Oral Health
We’ve all been over these with our parents and dentists through the years, but it pays to go through proper technique one more time. Following the below guidelines will ensure that we get the most out of our dental care routine without damaging our teeth.
- Angle the brush 45-degrees to your teeth and gums
- Use short strokes, no wider than a single tooth, while brushing
- Brush the inner, outer, and chewing surfaces of your teeth
- Use a vertical stroke to clean the inside of your teeth
- Follow with flossing and mouthwash
- Don’t brush your teeth more often than twice a day, with rare exception
- Use soft-bristled toothbrushes to avoid damaging gums
- Avoid charcoal toothpaste, or use it sparingly
By following these guidelines, you’ll be giving yourself the best chance of a lifetime of good dental health. While brushing more than twice a day is sometimes appropriate, it should be done sparingly to guarantee your teeth and gums remain healthy.
Overbrushing can damage and expose dental roots, which are more susceptible to decay
Indications You’re Brushing Too Often
Having gone over the details of proper brushing technique, we’re going to now touch on a few of the signs that can tell you that you’re overbrushing. The following list contains symptoms that are commonly associated with brushing your teeth too often. While these symptoms can have other causes, it’s important to know that they are also associated with damage caused by over-brushing.
- Bleeding Gums – Is it common for your gums to bleed when you finish brushing? While also a common symptom of gum disease, it may mean that you’ve been using your toothbrush too often. It can also result from using hard-bristled toothbrushes.
- Sensitive Teeth – While normal decay can be responsible for dental sensitivity, it can also occur due to overbrushing. Brushing too often can wear down your email and expose sensitive dentin and nerves.
- Brushing After Meals – Brushing after every meal is often touted as a great way of protecting our oral health, but the opposite can be true. If you only eat three times throughout a day and brush after each one, you may be ok. On the other hand, if you’re a frequent snacker, this can become a problem.
Too much of a good thing can be a serious problem for your oral health. Take the opportunity to speak with your dental professional if you’re concerned you may be brushing your teeth more often than is healthy for them.