Brushing Tips To Improve Your Dental Hygiene Game

We've said it many times here at ClearClub, but if you are a grinder and clencher then using a guard to protect your teeth is merely one key element to better oral health. As with anyone, that plan starts with brushing right.

Man and child brushing; photo courtesy of iStockPhotoYou may be someone who ensures daily that they take time out of their regular routine to brush – even on your lunch breaks at work – and yet, there may be one or two things you can do to ensure an even better, more thorough brushing technique that will help keep your teeth and gums at their healthiest. Here are some tips we've gathered that you should keep in mind...

Insist on soft, pliable bristles for your toothbrush. Whether you use an electric toothbrush or a traditional one, it is critically important not to use hard bristles if you really want to get the best clean. A harder scrub doesn't necessarily mean a better one; when the bristles of your brush are pliable, it allows them to get between your teeth and under the gums better. Your brush should have a certain degree of resistance, but more give in order to achieve this. And of course, make sure your brush is approved by your dental association.

Woman brushing her teeth; image courtesy of Pexels.comThink of it as more of a massage than a scrub. This one might sound a little odd, but the truth is that if you brush too hard you're going to do more harm than good; it's not quite the same thing as cleaning grout from between the tiles in your shower. You definitely don't want to scrub so hard that you'll cause damage to your gums and other soft tissue; use a bit of pressure, but don't force the bristles too hard or fast. It should be enough to take care of most plaque buildup, which is soft and loose.

Don't. Rush. Yes, we know, this should be self-evident but goodness knows, we've all been in that position where we're in a rush or we have something else we want to get to and brushing does seem like a chore in that moment. It is critically important not to spend less time than 2 minutes on your brushing, though, so be sure not to compromise on that!  If it helps, pop the TV on or put on a song you like to pass the time, that way you can get 2-3 minutes in a little bit easier.

Woman brushing her teeth; image courtesy of UnsplashBe sure to mix up your pattern. Yes, having just warned you not to rush, we're going to go ahead and say that you may still end up rushing from time to time anyway; hey, nobody's perfect! But there's another technique that you can use to balance things out, and it is starting your brushing in a different place each time. Typically, your energy/focus peters out toward the end, so if let's say you always start in the front of your top row of teeth – they're naturally going to get better attention than other places. So next time, start in the back on the left... then the next time after that, in the back on the right... and rotate, ensuring that your whole mouth gets better, more even coverage over time.

Keep it circular. You've been hearing this one from your dentist since you were a kid, but it bears repeating: Brushing back and forth isn't the answer, and in fact if you brush horizontally too much you could unwittingly do damage to your gum line in the long run. Make sure that your brush strokes are in a circular motion, as best as you can manage both inside and outside your teeth, and keep that 45 degree angle your dentist showed you so that you reach around the gums without scraping them.

Don't forget about your tongue! Much of our guides and blogs are focused on your teeth, for obvious reasons, but when it comes to oral health we'd be remiss if we didn't remind you to look after your tongue while brushing, too. The tongue can pick up lots of bacteria when you eat or drink, which can cause more overall trouble (not to mention bad breath!); this is also easiest to do with soft, pliable bristles, but ensure that you spend a little bit of time cleaning your tongue each time, including the back. (Just be gentle and don't rush it, and you shouldn't have to worry about gagging!)

Toothbrushes on a rack; image courtesy of PixabayStore your brush correctly when it's not in use. By our nature, we usually want to protect things from dirt and outside elements, but when it comes to your toothbrush you should try to avoid falling into the trap of protecting it too much. The main practical application of a toothbrush rack – or dock, for your electrical brushes – is to give your brush a place to air out after you use it. Never keep your brush in a sealed container at home, and try not to while traveling unless it's in your bag en route; if your brush doesn't have a chance to dry, this also encourages bacteria growth that is definitely not good hygiene.

The ADA recommends you replace your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months.  We strongly believe the same holds true for your Guard, which happens to get used 6 to 8 hours (opposed to the 6-8 minutes per day for a toothbrush) a day.  That's all the more reason to opt for the subscription from ClearClub.  Don't wait, do it today.

These tried-and-true dental hygiene tips go hand in hand with your bruxism treatment; if your teeth are kept as clean and happy as can be, then our ClearClub guards will work their very best! ClearClub's custom-fit, low-cost night guards will help protect your teeth from grinding and clenching, and start as low as $95 for your first guard. Plus, they are shipped directly to your door! Your teeth will thank you.

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