The Fono

Health & Social Services

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Brushing Tips

There is a great deal you can do to help keep your teeth healthy and strong. It all comes down to brushing and flossing regularly. It is important to change your tooth brush regularly to ensure the effectiveness of it in keeping your teeth and gums healthy and clean.

How often should I brush and floss my teeth?

Brushing - Brush your teeth at least twice a day (especially before going to bed at night) with a soft bristle brush and toothpaste.

  • Brush at a 45 degree angle to the gums, gently using a small, circular motion, ensuring that you always feel the bristles on the gums. 
  • Brush the outer, inner, and biting surfaces of each tooth. 
  • Use the tip of the brush head to clean the inside front teeth. 
  • Brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.

Electric toothbrushes are also recommended. They are easy to use and can remove plaque efficiently. Simply place the bristles of the electric brush on your gums and teeth and allow the brush to do its job, several teeth at a time.

Flossing – Daily flossing is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gum line. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces, it disrupts plaque colonies from building up, preventing damage to the gums, teeth, and bone.

  • Take 30-40cm of dental floss and wrap it around your middle fingers, leaving about 5cm of floss between the hands. 
  • Using your thumbs and forefingers to guide the floss, gently insert the floss between teeth using a sawing motion. 
  • Curve the floss into a “C” shape around each tooth and under the gum line. Gently move the floss up and down, cleaning the side of each tooth.

Floss holders are recommended if you have difficulty using conventional floss.

Rinsing – Rinsing after you brush is not recommended as it washes away the fluoride in the toothpaste from your teeth. Simply spit out the excess toothpaste without rinsing so that the fluoride stays in contact with the tooth for longer

When should you change your toothbrush:

  •  Every Three Months change your toothbrush
  • If your bristle become frayed or worn, it’s time to change your tooth brush
  • After illness change your toothbrush, even something as simple as a cold for maximum effectiveness.

And be sure to practice diligent hygiene, despite the type of toothbrush you're using. A new toothbrush can remove more plaque than one that's worn out, ensuring that your brush is working its hardest to help keep your teeth clean and healthy.

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