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Brushing and flossing are important, but are you doing it correctly?
Updated: 4/4/2012 5:00:24 PM

Brushing and flossing are important, but are you doing it correctly?  

By now, most people know that they key to maintaining their oral health is to brush and floss regularly. However, just brushing and flossing is not enough if a person isn't doing correctly. Many individuals may think that they are doing right by their teeth, but may be surprised to learn that their so-called "good" habits, are actually damaging their dental health.

For example, brushing too hard can lead to enamel and gum erosion, damaging the teeth. The same is true of brushing immediately after a meal, especially a person eats or drinks something acidic, such as a soda. People should brush 30 minutes after a meal, to remove leftover food particles without eroding enamel.

"Simply going through the motions when brushing your teeth isn't very effective," stated Chris Hooper, a cosmetic dentist in Virginia Beach. "Good oral hygiene involves selecting a proper toothbrush, using good brushing techniques and flossing properly."

The American Dental Hygienists Association states that people should gently brush the outer surfaces of two to three teeth at a time using a vibrating back and forth rolling motion. Furthermore, when flossing people should gently glide the floss in between the teeth, rather than "snapping" it between their chompers. 

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