Sunday, August 2, 2009

What's the best way to brush your teeth (and more tooth care issues)?

I have had a few dentists in the past 15 years. One said to brush at an angle into the gumline to get my teeth clean up to the gums. Another said not to brush at an angle because it would just wear away the gums. Instead, he said, brush side to side. A third said that up-and-down or circular motion is the way to go.

How do you brush, and does anybody really have any idea about the best way to brush?

Also, I have been having tooth sensitivity near the gumline on one of my teeth (especially when I eat hard foods or touch the area). My dentist did a small bonding job there to relieve the sensitivity, but I still have it. Any idea what might cause it? It's not extremely aggravating--just annoying.


What's the best way to brush your teeth (and more tooth care issues)?
brush vertically be sure not to put too much pressure on it
Reply:I typically brush with a toothbrush and toothpaste. No particular way, and I've got great teeth and gums.
Reply:I agree with the circular motion. I think that's the best way to clean teeth and get the gums
Reply:Brush each tooth a circular motion....just at the gum need to brush hard..other wise you could get gum recession.....It should take you no Less than 2 minutes. Just be gentle...and care for each tooth......Most importantly don't forget to floss.....for it will keep your gums and teeth healthy....

trust me i know.
Reply:i floss and scrape my teeth before i brush and then i brush up and down and then side to side and sometimes my gums get a little irrated but the listerine takes that away

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Tips for brushing a toddlers teeth?

My daughter is 16 months old and she refuses to let me help her brush her teeth. She loves to hold her toothbrush and brush them herself but when I try to help her she clamps her mouth shut. She doesn't do a very good job and I'm not sure what I can do to get her teeth clean. I read somewhere to use wet steralized gauze pads (in addition to her brushing) to wipe off the plaque/tartor from her teeth. It won't for one or two times, but then she bit my finger really hard. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

Tips for brushing a toddlers teeth?
At least she attempts to clean her own so things are going in the right direction. Clean your teeth at the same time as her showing her the different movements and areas to brush so she can copy you. These are only milk teeth and onluy have to last a few years so a few month of poor brushinf will not matter too much.

More important is diet - not too much juice or squash - sweets ans cakes in moderation, fizzy drinks an occadional treat - as these eat away at the enamel. Unflavoured Milk and water are harmless to teeth.

She should also visit the dentist with you so she can get used to having her teeth checked at an early age.
Reply:You just have to do it. My 18 month odl didnt want us to brush his either. But the deal is, WE brush them first and THEn he brushes.
Reply:Try those spin brushes, they pretty much do the work for you. Then, you can help her move the toothbrush around without sticking your fingers in her mouth. Be sure that you are using toothpaste that has no floride in it since she is too young to understand the concept of spitting it out.
Reply:16 month love to brush her teeth. Every time any one in the house brushes she must. I like the deal First I brush then you. But another thing is you brush mommys teeth and I'll brush yours. She may like that game. Also try to get her to moch your movements with the tooth brush. Good practice and mine loves that game. Also maybe brush some one elses teeth and praise them then try your daughters and giver her as much or more. Good luck
Reply:I asked my doctor when my son was 2 if I should be brushing his teeth, and he said that there was no need. Children at that age can't spit either, so anything that was "brushed" would end up getting swallowed.

Unless you are feeding her a ton of sugar, in my opinion, she doesn't need to brush her teeth at that age, and she certainly shouldn't be using toothpaste.

If you think about it, humans weren't created to have to brush their teeth, so if you don't feed your child junk and keep the food you are giving her natural, you wont have to worry about brushing her teeth for a while.
Reply:I give our 14mo old the toothbrush and tell him it's time to brush his teeth - in the meantime I fill up a little cup with a few sips of water and then take over. I brush his teeth while "singing" to him about brushing his teeth. He does have a short attention span since he'd rather play with all the things on the bathroom counter instead, so we brush thoroughly but quickly. If he clamps or bites the brush, I try to make him laugh by calling him my little monster so that he opens his mouth and try again! When I'm done, he gets to drink from the "big boy cup" which is kind of his reward, so to speak.

With anything else at this age, repetition and consistency are key. Our next step may be to try a kiddie toothpaste, too. Good luck :)
Reply:just gently squeeze her cheeks together to make fish lips %26amp; force it in there, it never hurt my sons %26amp; also tell her that she can brush when your finished.Also do this at her level. After I had finished I gave my boys there brush so they can have a go %26amp; at first they tried to brush %26amp; ended up chewing on it %26amp; now after watching me brush my teeth they are getting much better %26amp; I really dont need to do much now.
Reply:let her chew on the toothbrush for fun. i let my son think it is one of his toys and not a chore,. he just chews on it all day and cleans his teeth. the more you force it on her, the worse it might get.
Reply:My daugher is 18 months and we're going through the same thing. What works for us is I sing the ABC's and during the song I have to brush her teeth, but after I'm done singing it then she can brush her teeth. Not only does it work but she's picking up her ABC's :)
Reply:Well even if her teeth don't get that clean, remember she'll have another pair coming when she's older. But it's good to start practicing dental hygiene at an early age
Reply:my daughter is now 2 and used to let me brush her teeth then went through a phase where she wouldnt let me near her mouth with a brush - she had to do it herself! now when we get up in the morning i put toothpaste on her brush and give it to her and she trys to brush em and then i will give em the once over. if you sit down in front of her then she should try and copy you and learn fairly quickly how to brush a bit better. worked for mine. all the best!
Reply:my 22mths used to be like that too. He is excited about it and wants to explore and so i let him do it himself. Guess he got tired of it already and he allows me brush it now. And i agrees with the 2nd answer, get those battery operated spin brush. It will make things easy.
Reply:Oh Man do i know what you mean~

I have a 22month old and Every day its a battle, I usually brush teeth after her bath while she's wrapped in a towel, (that way her arms are wrapped in the towel and she can grab the tooth brush)

I lay her across my lap and wait for her to open her mouth, she will refuse at first but after a few moments she'll start crying and i just have to brush as fast as i can, I really hate to do it though, She screams bloody murder the whole time and its not fun, but you must keep those little teeth healthy~
Reply:Let her do it herself at first and then just say "let mummy finish off please" then she has done it herself but you are making sure that it is done properly. She just wants to be a big girl and do it herself. Either that or you wil have to cheat and wait until she is asleep and give them a quick scrub before she wakes up!!! o/j Hope this helps!

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Where should I go for teeth whitening treatment and what kind?

I just got my braces off and I have well what you would say average teeth. Not disgusting but still yellow stains around it. When I was young I use to have a very bright smile, now.. it's gone. What treatment should I get to get my teeth white again and have a bright smile? Also, how long does it take, and will it last if I keep my teeth clean?

Where should I go for teeth whitening treatment and what kind?
If you want to whiten your teeth, with quicker, visible and healthy glowing results, then this best method for teeth whitening is just a click away! Search and find the very effective teeth whitening kit from For me and my family, it's the best and one of a kind. Try and you'll see the amazing difference. You greatly deserve the bright smiles of your dream.
Reply:consulting a dentist is the best way to be able to choose the best, safe and effective teeth whitening system. he may recommend you a good teeth whitener that contains good quality ingredients that will not harm teeth and gums. some teeth whitening kits contain harmful ingredients that can cause gum problems.

stained teeth are caused by the foods and drinks that you consume that can possibly discolor teeth like red wine, tea, coffee, colas and chocolates and more. it is best that you refrain from consuming them. if not, then you can use a straw when drinking. proper brushing and flossing will help remove stains after eating. visit for more tips on how to whiten teeth.


I have plaque on my bottom front teeth, if i get them cleaned can they get loose and fall out?

I have noticable plaque on my bottom front teeth. and since ive been pregnant (5 months) ive also noticed the gum there on the bottom is receding. i know i have to go get them cleaned, but my husband got his cleaned and he has a loose tooth. and he has the whitest teeth! does any one know if cleaning your teeth with somewhat recideing gums can make your teeth fall out?

I have plaque on my bottom front teeth, if i get them cleaned can they get loose and fall out?
Not getting them cleaned will cause periodontal disease, and then yes they will fall out.
Reply:I don't think it will make your teeth fall out. I had receding gums that happened during pregnancy too. Not sure why it happens. I've read it has to do with lack of calcium (are you taking a calcium supplement? Drinking milk?) but really who knows. :)

Go to your doc anyway. Also, a Sonicare toothbrush will help. They're not always the cheapest, but they really help to use the ultrasonic waves on your teeth and clean really thoroughly.

Also, you can buy plaque looseners in the store (in the mouth wash section). You swish with it first, then brush. Use a SOFT brush (a hard or even medium brush will be too rough on your teeth and gums and make it even worse).

Best of luck to you. Happy pregnancy!
Reply:rather your teeth will stay more.

the plaque will slowly eat into the teeth, slowly, but if it is removed the chances that the teeth will stay are going to increase.

Reply:Having noticable plaque on your teeth is an indication that you're probably not brushing effectively. As a result of not completely removing plaque from your teeth, the bacteria that's in the remaining plaque produce toxins that irritate the gum tissue. Several things can happen from this... one of which is the gum tissue starts to recede. The best recommendation is to have your teeth professionally cleaned and examined. At that time your dentist or hygienist will do what's called perio charting. This will let them know what condition your gums are in. Being pregnant plays a role in the condition of your gums too. Don't worry, having a cleaning even with receding gums won't make your teeth fall out. But in order to get an accurate answer for what may be going on in your mouth, you really need to see your dentist.
Reply:They'll fall out if the bone structure has already been eroded away. Getting your teeth cleaned is the only way to reverse (to some extent) or stop this.

There is such a thing as "pregnancy gingivitis", which is where plaque bacteria increases because of hormone secretions. It also happens during puberty and from birth control medications.

Tidbit: At dental assisting school, my instructor told us stories of being a hygienist for the army. Lots of soldiers had calculus (tartar or hard plaque) that covered their teeth, and only when she flicked off those pieces of hardened plaque did she discover that it was the only thing holding their teeth in!
Reply:You are probably talking about calculus.Plaque is soft and will be cleaned just by brushing.When it is not cleaned often enough,it becomes hard and starts causing gum disease and bone loss.I am talking about years of neglect,it just doesn't happen overnight.Anyways it does hold your teeth together,but keeps eating away your bone,because it is bacteria.Your bone should be holding your teeth,not the calculus.You need a deep cleaning now.When your teeth become loose after you get your teeth cleaned,there are other ways to bond them together.Ask your dentist about it .No dentist will ever recommend you to leave the bacteria inside your mouth.It will do more harm than good.
Reply:Only the dentist can tell you for sure. But yes, a cleaning is very very benificial. White teeth is not always an indicator of healthy teeth. Gum disease is a silent disease that many ppl have. No pain unti your teeth are about to fall out. Sometimes brushes simply can not reach deep in between teeth or below the gumline. Which is why a professional cleaning is very important. If you do not address the plaque accumulation now, then yes, it can lead to gum disease and eventually your teeth will fall out. Get 'em cleaned and piece of mind. It's fast and you don't have to worry about it again for a few months. No, cleaning with receding gums will not make your teeth fall out. But ignorning it will. I have receding gums from brushing too hard and still get reg cleanings, no problem. Go and get it over with. A doctor can also adress any questions.

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Horizontal impacted wisdom teeth angled out slightly to chin now 1/2 decay. dentise adv not to remove....? cos judging fm x-ray, it will cause temporary to permament damage on nerves to my left side of face. Gum covers 70% of it and that's the area that decay. The 30% exposed has been kept well. Dentise adv only if it gets worse, then need to consider to take out the one before it, let the wisdom teeth come out a bit more so lesser risk of damaging the nerve....where shall i seek 2nd opinion? Is it feasible to have the exposed area drilled, so that I can at least keep the 'leftover' of the wisdom teeth clean to avoid surgery that will damage the nerve???

Horizontal impacted wisdom teeth angled out slightly to chin now 1/2 decay. dentise adv not to remove....?
Definitely get a second opinion.
Reply:Thx for all yr comments. It's hard to find a trustworthy dental surgeon. Followed the dental surgeon adv, i am now using something like water pik to clean it and it seems fine. hope there is a smaller one which I can put in my handbag! Report It

Reply:Seek a 2nd opinion from another oral surgeon, perhaps even get a 3rd. There is often a risk when removing any impacted wisdom tooth of nerve damage.
Reply:Get a few opinions so you can make an informed choice.

I hope you find a really good dental surgeon who can do a brilliant job and you end up with zero problems!
Reply:You need to see an Oral surgeon.It is complicated and wort spending money on.


I have a 18 mth old who all of a sudden refuses to clean his teeth, any solutions?

My son is generally a very good boy, except all of a sudden he refuses to clean is teeth. I was given some advice which was to not let him off the seat until he has let me clean them. I have tried this everyday since I was told this (which still doesn't result in his teeth getting clean any only resulting in him crying and screaming and it has now become an event which we both do not look forward to. I am putting his behaviour down to the terrible twos as I am pretty sure he is not teething.

I have a 18 mth old who all of a sudden refuses to clean his teeth, any solutions?
Dont push the issue: if he doesnt want them cleaned wait until later on maybe when you are changing his diaper or getting him ready for bed. Making him stay in his chair will only get you both mad and upset. Its not worth it. Maybe you can try to make it a game. Sing songs, do a little dance whatever makes him giggle and then go in for his teeth. Good Luck.

PS: My 19mo son hates when I clean his teeth but he loves to do it himself. I put a little baby toothpaste on his tooth brush and he sits in the bathroom while Im getting ready for work or for bed. When he is done he knows I have to do a once over with the toothbrush. Maybe you can try letting him do it himself.
Reply:does he give you any hints as to why?

is it the flavour of the toothpaste? is it the time? does he want to do it himself?
Reply:I got my daughter this weird finger brush thing..i would put the weird brush over my finger and brush them that way...but when she decided that was no fun i let her pick her own toothbrush from the store..and got some baby gel is made for babies and young toddlers. I let her look in the mirror while we did it...i let her try it by herself then would just help a little. Also if i would sit her up on the counter and we would brush our teeth together it would help. OOOH we also got her a little kid spin brush that she thought was really it helps clean the teeth even if she wasn't good at brushing hard enough...

Hope this helps
Reply:Look behind his teeth (like the roof of his mouth) -- are there any little white blisters? My grandson refused to let us brush his teeth about that same age and he had thrush. PAINFUL!! If you see anything out of the ordinary, take him to the Dr.
Reply:well you just simply need to lay down the law and let him know whos boss.....discipline him now while you can...cuz if you think this is bad just wait tils he older:/
Reply:Buy a cartoon toothbrush that he will get excited about and get some fun toothpaste appropriate for his age. Explain that big boys get to use these and throw a "Yaaayyy!" Party when he lets you brush. Give him some control and let him put the paste on. Toddlers love to be involved.
Reply:I gotta tell you i dont think its all that important to clean the teeth of a kid this age....he is so young....But if its important to you....offer him a reward like stickers or a favorite new toy kind of thing if he can clean his teeeth every day for a week ...(or three days ...whatever)
Reply:This may sound kind of extreme, but I told my oldest daughter that if she doesn't brush her teeth every day that they will fall out. We only make them brush their teeth once a day right before bed, and sometimes they ask to brush them at other times on their own. But getting speical toothpaste and toothbrushes at the dentist every 6 months does help encourage them.
Reply:My daughter was like that for a period of time. We let her pick out her own toothbrush and paste and then I printed a Blue's Clue's brush chart off of the Nick Jr. Website and got stickers to put on them so she would want to earn them. It worked really well with her and she loves to brush her teeth now. Also, I let her brush my teeth while I brushed hers, it was a bit difficult but it made it fun for her.
Reply:my son did that too about that age. I figured out he wanted to brush his own teeth. try letting him hold it and help guide him, showing him how to brush. show him in front of a mirror too. it might help. also brush your teeth at the same time. worked for me and my son. good luck
Reply:Let him pick out his own toothbrush at the store, and get some flavorful kid tooth paste. I understand he is only 18 months. I have a granddaughter the same age, who picked out the toothbrush she wanted!

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Very Important Question about your teeth! PLEASE ANSWER!?

I am a dental hygienist who works in a small office. We need more people to come in and get their teeth cleaned. Any ideas? What makes you WANT to get your teeth cleaned at a certain dentist's office? What keeps you coming back every 6 months? Please let me know what you're thinking!

Very Important Question about your teeth! PLEASE ANSWER!?
I headed a large elite clinic in Northen Cal for many years. We were extremely successful and we never did a scrap of advertising, not even in the phone book. Just a simple listing. People came to us and sent their friends and families and continued to come back to us even when they moved out of the area if they could manage it. We made certain that every single staff member a patient encountered while in our office treated them like family, bothered to remember their name and something about them and above all treated them with cheerfulnees, respect and honesty always. The hygienists always called new patients and anyone they did a new procedure on or anesthesia to check up and see how they were doing. In the course of their dental visits our hygienists would ask their families and ask if they had a good a dentist already. If not they told the patient, "we'd love to see them here because we know that if they are referred by you they are the kind of people we'd like to have in our practice." We also keep an efficient recall system in place by scheduling their next appointments before they leave the office, sending them a card two-three weeks before their appointment and confirming two days ahead. It didn't hurt that we made sure that our practice always use state-of-art procedures and equipment and let the patients know it. Good luck.
Reply:I go to one of the most expensive dentist in my town because everyone there is wonderfully pleasant and genuinely concerned for my teeth and my children's teeth. I will always go there.

But years ago, I could not go because I had no insurance.

I can honestly say the answer to your question (for me) is:


It is easy to want to see a dentist, and take care of your family's teeth, IF you have dental insurance.

I believe that a lot of families just are not able to afford a regular dental schedule.

Medical and Dental services are always needed. Unfortunately, a large population are unable to obtain such services.
Reply:Put up posters with decaying or nasty looking teeth and a little slogan(ex. Come clean your teeth, 1 time a week!). That's what they did in my town and everyone was like, "ew, gross" because they didn't want their teeth to look like that.
Reply:For me it is all about not being rushed and herded in and out of the office. I appreciate a kind hearted dentist and dental hygienist. My dentist is a wondeful he is patient and gentle with his patients whether or not they are wimps! There are sometimes that I don't quite make it on the 6 month mark so I would ask that I not be hounded about why I didn't make it in to the office.
Reply:dental insurance!
Reply:If you offer your currnet patients reliable, friendly care; referrals are your best bet. Also, inform your patients about the importance of continued care. I always tell our patients that keeping their teeth clean is like cleaning up your credit.

You have to put in work to get up to where you need to be, then keep working at it to maintain.

And go out in your scrubs! The beauty of scrubs being so comfortable is that you can wear them out to run errands (and get really good service!) and whenever I do, I inevitably get asked about what realm of healthcare I am in. Make sure to carry business cards with you. But not in the obvious front pocket, that looks like you're out fishing for business. Dig in your purse a little for them, and make sure to sign each card prior to handing it out. Even if you don't hear from them right away, don't fret. Make a good impression and they will come around.
Reply:Me and my family have gone to the same dentist for about 25 years now.. We know them, they know us, and they do a good job and are friendly.