The Jakarta Post
You might want to brush your teeth longer than you've been doing. (Shutterstock/File)
Up and down, left and right. Brushing your teeth might seem very mechanical and at this point, you're probably doing it with muscle memory only.
However, just because you can brush your teeth, does not mean you're doing it right.
First, you might want to brush your teeth longer than you've been doing.
"I would say two minutes, twice a day, for brushing," said Paul Lupke, the chair of surgical sciences, professor and postdoctorate director in periodontics at Marquette University, as quoted by Reader's Digest.
Two minutes might sound easy, but while doing such a repetitive motion, time might pass differently. Set up a timer to make sure you're not underdoing it.
Second, flossing is more important than you think.
"It is important to clean in between your teeth once a day with floss, floss picks or a water flosser to eliminate tooth decay-causing bacteria that harbor between teeth where a toothbrush cannot reach," said Ryan Dodge, a dentist at Howell Comprehensive General Dentistry. Do it tooth by tooth to make sure you are not missing anything.
Read also: Seven foods that may harm your teeth
Third, finish with mouthwash.
Many people skip mouthwash, thinking that it is only for those with bad breath. However, mouthwash can actually help remove plaque that the good-old toothbrush and floss cannot do, as well as help preventing tartar buildup and gingivitis. (dev/kes)