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How To Brush Your Teeth | Farnham Dentist

Dentists, including our own dentist in Farnham, recommend that you clean your teeth at least twice per day. Doing this after meals helps to keep bacteria at bay as it is this bacteria which secrete acids whilst they digest the sugar in your food.

Dental fillings are unfortunately very common in the UK With 84% of adults having at least one or more fillings and each of those adults having on average 7 fillings. This is a direct result of only 42% of adults using a toothbrush and toothpaste for their oral care and only 21% of adults visiting the dentist annually. These factors combine to mean that dental decay is more likely to occur and less likely to be detected and prevented.

Tooth Brushing

When you brush your teeth you are doing two things. The first is mechanically removing layers of bacteria that build up on your teeth and the second is applying fluoride from the toothpaste you use. It is important to brush for a full 2 minutes to ensure that enough time is taken to cover all of the accessible surfaces, here’s what we recommend:

  • Brush with a small, circular action or use an electric toothbrush.
  • Try and brush in an ordered sequence which will ensure you brush all areas consistently.
  • Move along one tooth at a time with the brush head angled 45 degrees towards the gum line to ensure nowhere is missed.
  • Be careful to brush right down to the gum level as this is where most plaque builds up.

We found this great video on YouTube from Colgate which goes through how to brush your teeth, take a look now.

Flossing or Interdental cleaning

By flossing every day you will reduce your chances of developing gum disease significantly. Most gum disease starts in between the teeth where your brush doesn’t reach so this is the ONLY way to prevent gum disease in this area.

Much tooth decay starts in between teeth so you will reduce the chances of this happening also.

You will see the benefits in less than a week.

We found people that come to our dental practice in Farnham, Surrey give many reasons for not flossing their teeth… Have you used any of these?

1. Food doesn’t get caught between my teeth, so I don’t have to floss.

Brushing only covers 80% of the surfaces of the teeth. Flossing cleans the spaces between the teeth where your toothbrush cant reach. Regular flossing can assist in your fight against gum disease and tooth decay.

2. No one has shown me how to floss. Therefore, I don’t know how to do it.

Flossing most certainly is a skill which can be learnt, practising the technique daily will help you become more adept at flossing, here are a few tips.

  • Start with about 18 inches of floss. Wrap most of it around the middle finger of one hand, the rest around the other middle finger.
  • Grasp the floss tightly between your thumbs and forefingers, and use a gentle shoeshine motion to guide it between teeth.
  • When the floss reaches the gum line, form a C shape to follow the contours of the tooth.
  • Hold the floss firmly against the tooth, and move the floss gently up and down.
  • Repeat with the other tooth, and then repeat the entire process with the rest of your teeth, “unspooling” fresh sections of floss as you go along.

3. I don’t have the manual dexterity to floss, I’m all fingers and thumbs.

This can be a particular problem for people with hand, finger and joint problems, especially the elderly.

Floss holder

There are many devices available on the market to help, simple floss holders can work excellently. Have a chat with your dental hygienist to find out which device works best for you.  Here are a few cheap suggestions from Amazon.

And finally, here’s another great video made by Colgate which explains more on how to Floss your teeth.

So how do you feel about cleaning your teeth now? Do you feel more confident to brush and floss daily now that you have read this blog post?

It’s also important to note that as your local Farnham dentist. We offer dental hygiene services aimed at oral health education and treatment for people who want to maintain a healthy mouth and fresh breath.



Adult Dental Health Survey 1978 and 2009 (England, Wales and Northern Ireland).

National Dental Survey, British Dental Health Foundation, 2007 & 2010.

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