At Drs. Susan Chmiel & Rachel Bohn, we know how important balancing daily oral care with regular six-month dental checkups in Franklin, Wisconsin is to a lifetime of healthy smiles. And since nothing is as elemental as cleaning your teeth, today we are sharing some brushing basics for you to enjoy. Let’s begin!


Tip #1 Don’t use hard-bristles when you brush your teeth. Soft bristles effectively loosen oral debris and plaque from under the gums and teeth without irritating gum tissue or stressing tooth enamel.


Tip #2 Why use a big toothbrush head when a smaller one fits better in the mouth to clean all those hard to reach areas, including the back molars that do most of the chewing.


Tip #3 Don’t keep your toothbrush around until it falls apart. This is a biggie; aim for replacing it every 3-4 months, or sooner as the bristles lose their shape. Also, replace your toothbrush after any contagious illness–like a cold–to prevent recontamination.


Tip# 4 Don’t scour as you clean. Hard brushing can damage tooth enamel and gum tissue.  Picture massaging your teeth while you work to remove oral debris and dental plaque.


Tip #5 Don’t skimp on brushing time. Aim for at least two minutes each time you brush, brushing 2-3 times every day.


Tip #6 Never share your toothbrush! We cringe when we hear of people sharing germs this way as everyone has oral bacteria. To avoid contamination, give everyone their own toothbrush and store them upright, not touching each other. You want to air dry in between uses to prevent bacterial growth.


Tip #7 Brush in an up and down motion using small, circular movements beginning at the gumline. Gently clean all tooth surfaces including the front, back, tops and in between.


Tip #8 Give your gums some TLC since they tend to hold harmful bacteria along the gumline and in the gum crevices. You can hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gumline for more effective cleaning.


Tip #9 Brushing right after eating can be harmful. Acids from food can soften tooth enamel so waiting 15-20 minutes after eating gives your saliva a chance to neutralize the acids before brushing. If you can’t wait, at least rinse your mouth with water before brushing.


Tip #10 One a day, be sure to do the Big Three: brush, floss, and rinse your mouth with mouthwash to remove lingering bacteria.


We hope you enjoy these tips and answer some of your brushing questions. Is it time for your next dental checkup with Dr. Susan Chmiel? If so, please reach out to us at 414-525-0300 and let’s give your smile a look. We are here to help you receive the quality oral care you deserve!


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