Are You Brushing Your Teeth Too Harshly?
You might be doing more “mean” than “clean”….

Are You Brushing Your Teeth Too Harshly?

When you brush your teeth, are you gentle on them… or do you scrub them with a lot of force? You might not have given this much thought, if any at all. But this is actually an important question to ask yourself! We’ll tell you why.

If you’ve been in the habit of brushing your teeth aggressively, or if you’ve been using a toothbrush with hard bristles to get the task done, it’s time to change your ways. Our Burlington dentist or hygienist is always happy to demonstrate a proper cleaning technique if you happen to need a little “brushing up” on your skills.

So, let’s get to it! Here are two important reasons as to why hard brushing does more harm than good:

Enamel wear: Your tooth enamel might be stronger than bone, but it isn’t immune to the harmful effects of aggressive brushing over time. Seeing how tooth enamel (the protective surface layer of our teeth) can’t grow back once it’s gone, doing whatever we can to preserve it is best… and with that said, gentle brushing with a soft bristle toothbrush is crucial. Oh, and another thing: make it a habit to wait at least 30 minutes before brushing after consuming any sugary foods/drinks. This is because the enamel temporarily softens after sugar consumption, and brushing directly after may cause some damage.

Gum recession: Hard brushing is a surefire way to contribute to gum recession over time… that and gum disease. Gum recession occurs when the gums start to pull away from the teeth, and gum tissue is lost. This exposes more of the tooth, often exposing the tooth’s root. Gum recession puts a person at risk for root decay, and if the recession is significant enough, tooth loss. But by flossing every day in addition to brushing gently twice a day, this is the best pay to prevent it from happening.

Well, there you have it! Two solid reasons to change up your brushing technique or swap out your toothbrush if it isn’t soft bristled. (Oh, and we should mention that gentle brushing means not having to replace your toothbrush as frequently)! As a general rule of thumb, toothbrushes should be replaced every 3 months, or when they start to show signs of wear… but brushing vigorously will cause bristles to wear at a faster rate.