What are you like at brushing your teeth?
What about your children's teeth?
I'm pretty regimented when it comes to the boys but I'll be truthful I have on occasion gone to bed without brushing!!
*hangs head in shame!*
I have taken part in the Love Your Mouth Challange over at
It's a quick questionnaire about your teeth and at the end it recommends what oral products you should be using!
For myself it recommended:
Sensodyne pronamel toothpaste
Sensodyne pronamel mouthwash
Normally when buying toothpaste for myself I usually pick up whatever is on offer and don't put too much thought into it and as for mouth wash that's once in a blue moon.
I will be trying out what was recommended for me and seeing if it makes a difference to my teeth.
Also making sure I brush my teeth before flopping down into bed.
For the boys it recommended:
Ru - Aqua fresh milk teeth
The wildlings - Aqua fresh little teeth
Noah - Aqua fresh big teeth
All of those are what I have been using already. So I feel like awarding myself some good mum points!
So why should we love our mouths??
A new study has revealed that thousands of people could be putting their oral health at risk by not brushing their teeth in the evening because they are too tired.
The survey of 10,000 UK adults, commissioned by GSK, as part of its Love Your Mouth campaign (LoveYourMouth.co.uk), found that 45% of people questioned say they have gone to bed without brushing their teeth, which could increase their chances of cavities, gum disease and even tooth loss.
When asked why they don’t stick to a daily oral healthcare regime, 40% of respondents blamed being too tired, 30% said it’s because they’re lazy and 28% admitted they forget to brush or floss.
Natty Burgess, a London Dental Practitioner comments: “People think that missing one brush won’t be a problem, but over time a lack of good hygiene can cause a whole host of unwanted oral health conditions. Not brushing at least twice a day can cause the build-up of plaque and calculus (hardened plaque), as well as tooth decay which can lead to sensitivity and cavities that require fillings. In a 24 hour period, we are awake for around 17 hours, equivalent to 1,020 minutes. You only need to spend around four minutes brushing, and a couple of extra minutes per day flossing to avoid having problems.”
Natty Burgess’ top tips for maintaining happy and healthy teeth:
- Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time.
The ideal times to brush your teeth are before bedtime and at least once more during the day (first thing in the morning is recommended). If you choose to brush after a meal or drink, wait around 40 minutes before your brush as this helps to avoid rubbing off the enamel which is softened after consuming acidic foods and drinks.
- Use a suitable toothpaste
Most people are never taught how to brush or floss properly (if at all), and aren’t aware that you need to use an appropriate toothpaste.
- Use floss or other interdental cleaning aids.
Ask your dentist to advise you on the right aid and size for your mouth. Your toothbrush will not reach areas where the teeth contact each other, so if you don’t use interdental cleaning products, you’re not completely cleaning your mouth and this can lead to decay, inflammation of gums and many other issues. It is in the gaps between your teeth where you mainly trap food when you eat. Regular flossing especially at night is imperative in maintaining a happy and healthy mouth.
- Use mouthwash, at least once a day at a different time from brushing, eg after lunch.
Mouthwash helps protect your mouth between brushing by maintaining lower levels of bacteria. Importantly though, mouthwash only compliments brushing and flossing but does not replace either. Mouthwash helps rinse out food particles from your mouth and helps deter bad breath as it is designed to leave your mouth with a fresh (normally minty) smell. For best results, no food or drink should be consumed for 30 minutes after it is used. Sploosh well, spit and don’t rinse.
- Spit, don’t rinse. Leaving toothpaste in your mouth helps protect your teeth.
Fluoride is a mineral which helps to strengthen tooth enamel, helps increase resistance to tooth decay and can also reduce the amount of acid produced by bacteria in your mouth. Therefore try not to rinse your mouth out with water after brushing as you’ll wash away all the fluoride.”
- Use disclosing tablets to see how well you are cleaning your teeth.
They will temporarily stain any plaque so you can see what areas you’re missing.
- Use a small headed toothbrush with soft, rounded bristles and a comfortable easy grip handle.
The approach should be to slowly and carefully follow a routine ensuring that they cover all areas, making sure no food remains in the mouth, and that no tooth has beenmissed.
- Prevention is key
Ask your dentist to teach you how to maintain a routine with correct oral hygiene procedures suitable for your individual needs as this is the key to long term success. Historically, people have grown up watching their parents put a toothbrush in their mouth and simply brushing around, assuming it is quick and that’s all that is needed. I regularly encourage my patients to go back to the basics and start with easy instructions on how to use a toothbrush and floss properly.
- Make brushing part of your bedtime routine
It can help if you connect the routine of brushing to the last thing you do before sleeping. If you like to take a relaxing bath or shower before bed, connect brushing your teeth with this relaxing part of your routine. To make sure you don’t forget to brush, it’s a good idea to set at least two daily reminder alarms on your mobile.
10. Visit your dentist for regular professional cleaning and check-ups
If you notice any unexpected changes in your gums or teeth (such as bleeding, redness or sensitivity), or feel something just isn’t right in your mouth (perhaps a lump, sharp edge on a tooth or other pain), book an appointment as soon as possible before the problem becomes bigger and painful. Small issues will regularly get sorted out easily and relatively cheaply by a dentist. The longer you leave a problem, the more time, effort and cost it will take to deal with, and you may suffer unnecessarily and for no good reason in the meantime.