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The amount of time people devote to dental hygiene may be related to the overall state of their dental health.
That is the message that the Academy of General Dentistry's Dr Luke Matranga is trying to convey to those who rush through their nightly dental hygiene routine.
He is urging people to make sure they brush their teeth for a sufficient period of time in order to provide comprehensive dental care to their mouth.
According to Matranga, three minutes is the optimum amount of time needed to thoroughly clean the teeth and gums.
"People will swear that they've brushed three to four minutes, but the average person brushes for less than a minute," he explained. "This is not long enough to reach all areas of the mouth and scrub off cavity-causing bacteria."
The American Dental Association recommends that people brush their teeth twice a day using a soft-bristled brush and fluoride toothpaste.
Toothbrushes should also be replaced every three to four months - or more often if you have recently suffered from a cold or other infection.
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