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Friday - - Beauty -

I’M HAV­ING TROU­BLE CHOOS­ING A TOOTH­BRUSH

Q Hard, medium or soft – with so many op­tions avail­able for a tooth­brush, I’m not sure what is best. Also, how of­ten should I change my tooth­brush?

ABrush­ing your teeth twice daily is rec­om­mended to main­tain your teeth in a healthy state and pre­serve your pearly whites. With reg­u­lar us­age the bris­tles in the tooth­brush get frayed over a pe­riod of time and do not clean your teeth as ef­fi­ciently. It is there­fore rec­om­mended that you change your tooth­brush ev­ery three­four months, or ear­lier if you see the bris­tles are frayed. In chil­dren the tooth­brushes may have to be re­placed ear­lier since they might be dam­aged faster.

Choos­ing a tooth­brush can be quite con­fus­ing since they are mar­keted as hard, medium or soft bris­tles with dif­fer­ent shapes, sizes and colours. Many shop­pers will RASHI CHOWDHARY tend to choose the hard-bris­tled tooth­brush with the im­pres­sion that the harder it is, the bet­ter it cleans! But along with re­mov­ing the plaque on your teeth, the hard bris­tles also erode your enamel, and can cause gum re­ces­sion lead­ing to fu­ture prob­lems such as sen­si­tiv­ity. So it’s best to re­serve the hard and medium ones to clean your jew­ellery or ce­ram­ics!

Al­ways choose a soft tooth­brush and do not use ex­ces­sive force while brush­ing. You need to brush for at least two min­utes and make sure you use the cor­rect tech­nique to clean all the ar­eas of the teeth. If you feel you have not cleaned your teeth well, brush longer but not harder.

You can also use an elec­tric tooth­brush, as some of them have a timer and also a sen­sor that tells you if you are brush­ing too hard. Elec­tric brushes are also ben­e­fi­cial if you are not aware of the cor­rect tech­nique for brush­ing. An­other fac­tor in choos­ing a tooth­brush is the size of the head. The stan­dard head size is ½ inch by 1 inch. While this is com­fort­able for most adults, if your mouth is small and you find this large, you should choose a tooth­brush with a smaller head, or even con­sider a pae­di­atric tooth­brush.

Af­ter us­ing your tooth­brush, rinse it well to re­move any tooth­paste, shake off the ex­cess wa­ter and then leave it up­right to dry, not in con­tact with any other tooth­brush or ob­jects. Do not put it in any con­tainer or cover it as this pre­vents the bris­tles from dry­ing and bac­te­ria grows in this moist con­di­tion.

Brush­ing alone is not enough to pro­tect your teeth so you should floss daily to clean the sur­faces be­tween the teeth.

Choos­ing the right tooth­brush should be a sim­ple task and make brush­ing an en­joy­able ex­pe­ri­ence. DR JOY ANTONY

is a lead­ing or­tho­don­tist in Dubai

54 is a nu­tri­tion­ist, di­a­betes ed­u­ca­tor and cre­ator of The Pro­tein Bake Shop

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