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Do You Know Your Toothbrush?

Posted Nov 21 2008 4:47pm
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Remember two important things
when you wake up each morning:
so that you may live;
so that others may live too.

A toothbrush is a home care dental cleaning aid or instrument composed of a handle for comfortable grip and bristles to clean all areas of the mouth. Not everyone knows this, but a toothbrush should be prescribed and based on the person’s individual needs.

The first toothbrush began in China in the year 1500 and later advanced to the Western world in 1640. Since then it has evolved into different modifications and transformations. Today, there are manual and mechanical toothbrushes, but the manual kind gets a lion’s share in the market in terms of sales.

In a study based of efficacy of toothbrushes, manual cleansing with toothbrush is considered the most effective way of plaque control and limits the possibility of dental caries (tooth decay) formation and gum disease.

Hardness and arrangement of bristles, angulation and taper of the brush head, and the length and design of the handle are among the many variations of a toothbrush.

The handle appears in stimulating colors in different shapes and sizes. The primary function of the handle is for firm and comfortable grip. Most toothbrush handles are straight. Others are made in more intricate designs like arched modification with serrations on it for a more steady hold and to prevent slipping.

The brush heads are prepared with bristles which may be of equal length or different sizes. Short bristles are effective in cleaning the surfaces of the teeth while long middle bristles remove accumulation of plaque in between teeth. Angled bristles gently massage and remove plaque at the gum line.

The bristles come ins synthetic or natural boar fivers. Resiliency is and expedient factor in synthetic variety because of its rounded ends at o.007 of an inch affording the brush to be used in either soft or hard type of bristle.

Another advantage of synthetic bristles is its durability and stiffness. It will remain the same, unaffected but water, but after prolonged use, may require replacement for a more effective brushing. Dentists and hygienists recommend replacing the toothbrush every three months.

The frequency of brushing teeth is an important factor in preventing dental diseases. Toothbrushing once a day only prevents gingivitis; twice daily brushes away dental caries flora; and thrice or frequent brushing a day brings a feeling of personal comfort for the individual.

Three to five minutes is the recommended length of time for mouth cleaning. It is suggested that toothbrushing be done before a mirror with light visibility to be able to check the brush and bristle placement in the mouth.

Night time is very important when the mouth should be clean as possible because plaque left in the mouth eventually results to gum disease and dental caries. Proper toothbrushing technique requires self-discipline. A person has to do it systematically and conscientiously.

Start with the back teeth on the upper portion and moving toward the front teeth and then returning to the remaining back teeth on the opposite side of the upper portion. Brush inner and outer surfaces of upper teeth beginning from the gums downward. The chewing surfaces of the upper teeth are brushed to and fro. The procedure is repeated on the lower portion where the inner and outer surfaces are brushed from the gums upward. Brush chewing surfaces of lower teeth following the same technique to and fro. The tongue should also be brushed considerably to eliminate lodged food debris. After toothbrushing, use dental floss or a clean thread to remove particles between teeth.
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