Proper oral hygiene minimizes the possibility of plaque buildup, reducing your risk of developing dental cavities and gum disease. For better oral health, you’ll want to use the right products for your teeth and gums. Therefore, it’s essential to do your research to find the best toothpaste, floss, and mouthwash. Here are some tips to help you find the best option for you.
How to Find the Right Toothbrush
Toothbrushes come in two types, manual and electric. While both types can effectively clean your teeth if you use them correctly, electric toothbrushes have the upper hand in some situations. For example, according to some studies, an electric toothbrush can eliminate more plaque than a manual toothbrush. They are also ideal for kids and individuals with limited dexterity, and some even come with timers that help ensure you brush long enough.
When choosing a toothbrush, soft bristles are the best as they don’t damage your teeth and gums, especially if you brush vigorously. Also, choose a brush whose head can fit into your mouth comfortably. Lastly, the handle of your toothbrush should offer convenience, depending on your needs. You can choose a toothbrush with an angled, non-slip, or flexible neck or handle.
What Type of Floss is the Most Effective?
Flossing helps remove food particles in areas that a toothbrush can’t reach. Below are popular options of floss and their benefits.
- Unwaxed Floss: Unwaxed floss consists of thin nylon strands. It is great for teeth that are close together as they can fit into tight spaces. They are also easier to hold as they have non-slip properties.
- Waxed Floss: These are nylon strands with wax coating and flavor. The wax keeps it from fraying, making it ideal if you have braces. However, since they are thicker than unwaxed floss, they are not suitable for teeth that are too close together.
- Dental Tape: Dental tape is your best option if you have large tooth gaps or recently underwent bridgework. It is thicker and wider than regular floss and can be waxed or unwaxed.
- Floss Picks: If you have trouble using regular floss due to limited mobility from illnesses like arthritis or old age, floss picks are your best bet. You don’t have to wrap them around your hand as they attach to plastic and can easily reach the back of your teeth.
What to Look for in Mouthwashes
Different mouthwashes have different ingredients that make them appropriate for various dental issues. Below are common types of mouthwashes and their benefits.
- Cosmetic Mouthwashes: They don’t have any germ-killing properties but are great for freshening your breath.
- Fluoride Mouthwash: It contains sodium fluoride, which helps fight tooth decay and strengthen your teeth.
- Antiseptic Mouthwash: If you have halitosis or an infection, consider an antiseptic mouthwash. It prevents bacteria growth in your mouth and keeps your breath fresh.
- Natural Mouthwash: If you don’t want alcohol-based mouthwashes, a natural mouthwash with essential oils is your best option.
When choosing a mouthwash, consider the ingredients and the results you want.
Which Order is Correct?
When cleaning your teeth, the order in which you brush, floss, and rinse your mouth is crucial. It is advisable to start by flossing your teeth, brushing them, and finally rinsing your mouth with mouthwash. Doing so allows you to pay attention when flossing, therefore, getting rid of particles that are hard to reach. When you brush after flossing, you kill most of the bacteria. Rinsing with mouthwash as the last step keeps your mouth fresh for longer, and the fluoride helps strengthen your teeth.
Ask Your Dental Professional
The best way to get the right product for your teeth is by asking your dentist. Since they have a better understanding of current oral hygiene products, your dentist can recommend the best options for the results you want.