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When you take the time to brush pearly whites correctly, you are effectively protecting your teeth (and gums) from the ravages of tooth decay and gum disease. For instance, people often saw back and forth or use brushes that have frayed bristles. Fortunately, there are better ways to brush. Dr. Timothy Dinkelman and our Northridge Dental LLC team in Lincoln, Nebraska, hope you enjoy the following brushing tips to ensure your healthy smile.

— Make sure the brush you use is the right size for your mouth, you want to make sure it fits comfortably in your hand and in your mouth.

— Make sure to use the softest bristle’s you can to get the job done. Hard bristles combined with strenuous brushing can wear down tooth enamel and cause your gums to recede.

— Brush at least twice a day for two minutes each time, but no more than three times a day. It’s also important to use gentle brushstrokes as you clean.

— As you brush, don’t saw side-to-side as this can damage the gum line. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle and use short up-and-down strokes to clean.

— While you are cleaning your teeth, go ahead and brush your tongue, the molars in the back of your mouth and all the sides of your tooth surfaces to remove harmful bacteria.

— Tooth whitening or tartar control toothpaste can be harsh on enamel over time. Conversely, fluoride toothpaste helps protect enamel and if you have sensitive teeth, desensitizing toothpaste helps protect those pearly whites.

— Beverages like coffee, diet sodas, fruit juices and energy drinks all have acid that softens tooth enamel. If you like these drinks, wait at least 20 minutes before brushing your teeth. This allows your saliva to remineralize your enamel before you brush, which protects your teeth.

— Because moist brushes can grow bacteria, store your toothbrush upright without touching surfaces (such as countertops, other toothbrushes, etc.) so it can air dry in between uses.

— Replace your toothbrush every three months to four months, or whenever the bristles fray. Frayed bristles can’t clean your teeth effectively.

While brushing your teeth correctly isn’t difficult, it does help to engage mindfully with this daily routine to make it most effective. You can maintain your healthy smile by brushing and flossing daily, and having your teeth cleaned professionally every six months. We invite you to schedule your next cleaning by calling 402-477-1177 today. Dr. Timothy Dinkelman and our team at Northridge Dental LLC in Lincoln, Nebraska, wish you and your family healthy and happy holiday season!