Dr Gwendolyn Amarquaye-Bayitse, a resident dentist of Pepsodent Ghana’s Dental TV Show, Time with the Dentist, has revealed that brushing one’s teeth should take not less than two minutes and should not be rushed.
This revelation was made in a bid to educate Ghanaians on good oral health. According to her, spending less than two minutes brushing is not enough time to remove as much plaque from the teeth.
Along with advising viewers to brush their teeth for the recommended amount of time, she said there are five surfaces of the teeth that have to be cleaned, namely the front or facial surface, chewing or the occlusal surface, inner or lingual surface and the interproximal surfaces.
She added that to succeed at effective brushing, one must brush with the jaws apart instead of together. This helps to easily segment the teeth into four parts – the upper and lower left and the upper and lower right, allowing for easy and effective brushing.
In demonstrating some of the steps that can be taken when brushing to ensure thorough cleaning of the teeth as well as avoid dental issues, Dr Gwendolyn Amarquaye-Bayitse said, “The first step to brushing correctly is making sure you’re prepared with the right tools. You’ll need a toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste like Pepsodent’’.
“Lubricate your brush with a small amount of water. Put a small amount of toothpaste on the toothbrush bristles. Insert the toothbrush into your mouth at about a 45-degree angle to your gums and use gentle, short strokes to brush your front teeth. Always brush in a circular motion. Brush the outside surfaces of your teeth, making sure to get the back molars and upper areas of your chewing surfaces. Flip the toothbrush upside down to get the inside surface of your top front teeth. Flip it back around to get the inside surface of your bottom front teeth”, she further indicated.
She advised that the bristles of the toothbrush selected must always be soft or medium, as the hard type could injure the gum and lead to gum bleeding.
“To avoid any issues with your teeth, it is very important to use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush and remember to change it every 3 months. Also, do well to visit the dentist regularly and avoid sugary foods. Drink more water. Brush with the family,” Dr Gwendolyn emphasized.