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How To Brush Your Teeth

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More Videos from Dr. Erik Svans 12 videos in this series

Dr. Svans illustrates the proper way to use a toothbrush.

Dr. Svans:
Hello, my name is Dr. Erik Swans and I am a dentist here in Scottsdale, Arizona.

And we provide general, cosmetic and implant dentistry to the greater Phoenix area.

I’d like to give you some information about the toothbrush. First off with the toothbrush, as everyone knows, there’s bristles on it.

And to me the most important part about the toothbrush is that these bristles on there are ultra-soft or soft.

My biggest concern is many patients think they need to brush hard. They think they need to brush with a medium bristle, stiff toothbrush – something on those lines.

That actually is more damaging than it is good because when we have those soft bristles it allows us to massage the gums.

Whereas, if we have a more stiff bristle toothbrush, you are actually going to wear away the gums and cause recession.

When it comes to using the toothbrush itself instead of using the toothbrush and brushing back and forth like this, what we’d like to have you do is take the toothbrush and angle it towards the gum line and then almost massage the gums and do little circles so these bristles get between the tooth and the gum – that’s the number one key that we see.

When it comes to brushing your teeth, I like to always say you need to brush for at least two minutes when you are brushing and at least twice-a-day.

Once in the morning; once at night, it just kind of works out great that way because it’s about 12 hours apart at least.

With that brushing in the morning and brushing at night what happens is that you are removing that bacteria before it can cause harm to the gums.

If you’ll leave it on longer than 12 hours it starts to cause the inflammation and inflammatory responses that leads to gingivitis.

If you leave it on even longer it can start to form the calcified plaque or tartar build up which only the dentist or a hygienist can remove here in the office.

When it comes to brushing the harder to reach spots, for example may be the back teeth, here along the cheek all the way to the backside of the back molar, upper and lower, what I recommend you do is actually close down a little bit as you reach back there with the toothbrush.

If you try to open really wide you’ll notice that your cheek will get really taught and you can’t get your toothbrush back there.

So if you go ahead and close down when that brush is back there you can move it around a little bit easier, get the backside of this back molar and what that really helps with is that’s, number one, that’s the spot that almost everybody misses if they are going to miss a spot.

If they are getting that spot you are getting everywhere else. So really work on those back corners.

Another thing that I recommend is brushing the tongue. Simply just stick your tongue out, use your toothbrush and brush in a forward motion.

You can put a little bit of extra toothpaste on there after you have already brushed your teeth or do it at the very beginning.

The key is that you want to have some toothpaste on there when you do this. So put just a pea-sized amount of toothpaste on there, whether you are brushing your teeth, or put additional pea-sized now when you are brushing the tongue and go ahead and just brush forward sticking your tongue out and that should do the trick as far as the tongue.

I don’t recommend brushing the palette, soft-palette or hard palette. There’s nothing sticking there and nothing is causing a problem there.

That actually isn’t necessarily even gum tissue and you are not going to get periodontal disease or even bad breath from your palette, but you will from your tongue and you will from around any one of your teeth.

About Dr. Svans:
Dr. Erik Svans, D.D.S., is a 1997 graduate of the University of the Pacific Dental School in San Francisco. He is an active member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), American Dental Association (ADA), Arizona Dental Association (AZDA), Dental organization for Conscious Sedation (DOCS), World Clinical Laser Institute (WCLI) and a graduate of the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies (LVI) and affiliated with the International College of Implantologists (ICOI). Dr. Svans specializes in Smile Design and Reconstruction, Dental Implants CEREC, Laser Dentistry, Teeth Whitening, Invisalign, and Dental Technology Advancements.

Visit Dr. Svans at his website

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