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Are You Brushing Your Teeth Right?

By Sara Butler

Oral health is a major aspect of your overall health. Yet many people aren't taking care of their teeth, gums, and mouth properly -- which can lead to big consequences down the road beyond tooth problems.

You may have been brushing your teeth for your whole life, but chances are you're making a few mistakes. Here are the most common mistakes seen when it comes to oral health and what you need to be doing instead!

You Only Brush Your Teeth

Yes, brushing your teeth is important. But if it's the only thing you're doing each day, then you're missing some really important things like brushing your gums too.

That's right, your brush shouldn't simply stop at your teeth, you should massage those gums with your bristles too. A lot of bacteria grows at the gum line. If you don't do something about it, then it accumulates and can lead to inflammation. Letting it go unchecked may allow it to progress to gum disease, which can lead to larger issues. That's why it's important to brush your gums as well as your teeth.

You Use the Wrong Equipment

Do you have a toothbrush with firm bristles? If so, then you may be doing more harm than good. Firm bristles can cause your gums to recede over the years. That's why dentists recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush. They help to clean your gums while still being gentle to help target bacteria.

Another place people tend to go wrong when it comes to oral hygiene equipment is their floss. The American Dental Association recommends flossing once per day with a water flosser or string floss. If you have large spaces in between your teeth, then you should be using something called an interdental cleaner instead of just floss. Talk to your dentist about which type of flosser is the best option for you.

You Don't Brush Long Enough

Be honest, how long do you really spend brushing your teeth each time you do it? You should be doing it for two full minutes, but many people miss that mark. On average, people only brush for about 30 seconds, so it's something that takes a lot of intention to do right.

Take care of your teeth so you can avoid health problems, such as heart disease, down the road. You'll also have pearly whites that you like to show off!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Round Rock, Tex.

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