Dentists say that the most important part of tooth care happens at home. Brushing and flossing properly, along with regular dental checkups, can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle against your gum line. Gently brush from where the tooth and gum meet to the chewing surface in short (about half-a-tooth-wide) strokes. Brushing too hard can cause receding gums, tooth sensitivity, over time, loose teeth.
Use the same method to brush all outside and inside surfaces of your teeth.
To clean the chewing surfaces of your teeth, use short sweeping strokes, tipping the bristles into the pits and crevices.
To clean the inside surfaces of your top and bottom front teeth and gums hold the brush almost vertical. With back and forth motions, bring the front part of the brush over the teeth and gums.
Using a forward-sweeping motion, gently brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth to remove the decay-causing bacteria that exist in these places.
Use an egg timer or play a favourite song while brushing your teeth to get used to brushing for a full 2 to 3 minutes. Some electronic toothbrushes have timers that let you know when 2 minutes are up.