How long should you brush your teeth for optimal effectiveness?

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Brushing your teeth is a daily ritual. It is a mandatory step in maintaining good oral hygiene. Throughout your life, you need to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Indeed, it is the only way to stay healthy. However, according to studies, the average time spent brushing your teeth is about 45 seconds in France, 1 minute in the United States and somewhere in between everywhere else in the world. This is a long way from the recommended 2 to 3 minutes of brushing. It is true that brushing can be a chore. Lack of time is thought to be excuse enough for not brushing properly. But if you're here, it's probably because you're aware of the complications of poor brushing. So you're looking to find out how much time you should spend brushing your teeth each day to keep them clean. No problem, we'll tell you how to brush your teeth thoroughly and effectively. 

Here's a guide to all the little time management tips you need to know about effective toothbrushing.

How important is it to spend time on toothbrushing?

Good tooth brushing is recommended by all health professionals: scientists, dentists and doctors. They can assure you that spending time brushing your teeth can prevent many oral diseases and infections. They warn about the main risks of poor tooth brushing, such as cavities, bad breath and gingivitis. In fact, the right amount of time spent brushing your teeth and the right way of doing it are the elements that ensure good quality in the long term. This helps to remove the plaque that builds up after morning, noon and evening meals. It is essential to remove this dental plaque by brushing for a long time to prevent it from turning into tartar. If you don't spend time removing it, you must go to the dentist. However, if you do this too often, you risk having serious dental problems.     


How much time should be taken for each stage of tooth brushing?

According to health experts, it is advisable to brush your teeth for at least 2 or even 3 minutes after each meal. Optimizing this time involves brushing teeth one by one without forgetting the back teeth. This technique will allows you to have perfectly clean teeth because the fluoride contained in the toothpaste tube will act much better. Afterwards, it is also possible to use toothpaste tablets without fluoride, which is much easier to carry around. The whitening effect will be the same in both cases. There are 5 brushing steps. Each step lasts less than a minute except for the last one, so that brushing is complete.

Here is a short overview of the brushing steps that you should be able to complete in 2 to 3 minutes:

Step 1: Brush the outside of your teeth


You must start by positioning your toothbrush correctly inside your mouth. To do this, you need to position it between your teeth and gums. Once you have positioned it correctly, you need to come and make a circular movement. It is important to start at the gums and work your way back towards each tooth. You should do 2 or 3 brushings before moving on to the next step.

Second step: Move to the inside of the teeth


The movements to be reproduced are the same as those used for brushing the inside of the teeth. However, you must brush the tongue and palate instead of the teeth and gums. In addition, the toothbrush must be in an upright position. Indeed, the movements must be made from front to back. The movement should be carried out as many times as before.

Third step: Take care of the different sides that are used for chewing food


The toothbrush should be placed in a vertical position. The movements to be carried out should be circular movements at the front and back of your mouth. However, it is important to make rotational movements on the tooth at the bottom. This should be repeated at least ten times on the top and bottom teeth.

Step 4: Use interdental brushes and dental floss


This step consists of actively brushing the interdental spaces. They are only used when the first three steps of tooth brushing have been completed. You must also have rinsed your mouth. Once you have done this, you should gently insert the brush into the spaces between your teeth. The movements you need to make are from the inside to the outside. Next, you should use the dental floss to remove anything that you did not manage to remove with the interdental brush.

Last step: Brush your palate and tongue


Finally, you need to take care of your palate and tongue, which also carry a lot of germs. To do this, use a tongue scraper and rinse your mouth with mouthwash. This helps to remove food waste and bacteria from inside your mouth. It protects you from bad breath and cavities. It also prevents you from getting periodontitis, which affects the gums and bones of your teeth. This step is the longest, as it is the final step in brushing your teeth. You should do it for at least one minute.

What about children: how long does it take to have healthy teeth?

Regardless of their age, children should brush their teeth for 2 minutes like adults. However, during these 2 minutes they should optimise their time to apply the DDD technique: top-front-bottom. You should therefore be behind them so that they can apply it as best as possible. Children should be taught to brush their teeth at an early age so that it becomes a habit.

Here's how to brush the teeth of a child aged 1 to 3 years:

Children often find it difficult to motivate themselves to brush their teeth. It is therefore important to help your child with the brushing. You should stand behind your child, put his or her head against you and hold it slightly back. This gives your child some stability and confidence. He will then take the brushing of his teeth as something good for him. You can start by brushing his lower teeth and then his upper teeth in vertical strokes.

On the other hand, the manual toothbrush is difficult to handle. However, the Y-Brush is the perfect toothbrush to apply this brushing technique. All you have to do is let the toothbrush guide you. There are also interchangeable stickers to customise the toothbrush: brushing your teeth becomes much more fun and enjoyable.

Why is brushing your teeth too often and too long dangerous?

Dentists are warning about the harmful effects of intensive brushing. According to the French Union for Oral Health, brushing your teeth more than three times a day is harmful to your health.

Generally, the most dangerous thing is to brush your teeth with a hard-bristled toothbrush. Toothbrushes with soft bristles are much less damaging to the protective layer of the teeth. You should also avoid brushing your teeth directly after eating, as they are more fragile at this time. It is therefore more reasonable to wait more than 30 minutes or even an hour before doing so.

It is therefore mainly the use of the wrong toothbrush and the wrong brushing technique that cause excessive brushing to damage the teeth.

However, it is recommended that you brush your teeth at least twice a day: in the morning and at night before going to bed for 30 minutes. Brushing your teeth three times is not inadvisable. Just don't rub too hard as this could damage your teeth. In any case, only brushing for two minutes will remove food residues that cause tooth and gum disease.

Here are the two main diseases caused by brushing your teeth too often and too long:

- Toothache: too much acid on the teeth

- Tooth abscess: a build-up of pus from an infected tooth

However, brushing your teeth with Y-Brush is much safer because it automates the gesture and the duration of brushing. It allows you to do the right thing automatically.

We hope this guide will help you manage your time to brush your teeth effectively. It's the only way to give yourself the best chance of staying healthy and living well. Taking care of those teeth is taking care of yourself.

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