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an apple a day keeps the dentist away

Natural Tooth Care Tips

Brush your teeth at least twice a day.

For sparkling teeth, rub them with a dry bay leaf. Do this twice a week.

Flossing is the best way to keep your gums healthy and reverse gum disease, along with brushing in the proper manner.

While you are sick and after a cold or flu, don't stick that germ-filled toothbrush back into your mouth. Rinse it thoroughly with hydrogen peroxide or alcohol, or throw it out and buy a new one.

Buy a new toothbrush at least every three months, but once a month is even best. Your teeth will be cleaner and whiter. Toothbrushes just wear out.

an apple a day keeps the dentist away

Toothpaste Tidbits

Toothpaste does lose its effectiveness over time, and many tubes come with an expiration date.

All toothpastes are not alike. Read the labels if you've been getting too many cold cores or if you get any allergic reactions, and try a brand with different ingredients. Tartar-control toothpaste is the biggest offender in this area.

No one should swallow toothpaste, but it can be extremely dangerous for little kids to do so. If you buy them shimmering, glittery, or special tasting toothpaste (like bubble gum), there is much more danger that they will ingest too much.

Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are heavy duty cleaners. Hydrogen peroxide should not be used daily. And, baking soda is too abrasive to enamel to be used "straight." Instead, try a natural brand that has incorporated one or both of these items into a safe toothpaste for you. Some choices are: Mentadent Advanced Whitening Fluoride Toothpaste w/Baking Soda and Peroxide, ♠ Colgate Whitening Baking Soda & Peroxide Toothpaste, and ♠ Arm & Hammer Advance White Daily Fluoride Mint Toothpaste, Dental Baking Soda & Peroxide.

toothbrush at an angle

How to Brush Your Teeth

Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gumline so that the bristles will go under the gumline. The picture above is the right angle for brushing your bottom teeth. Gently brush from where the tooth and gum meet to the chewing surface in small circles (not up and down or back and forth. This removes many times more plaque than regular brushing, which is most important to gum health.

Use a soft toothbrush for less gum irritation.

Brushing too hard can cause receding gums, tooth sensitivity, and even enamel loss.

To clean the chewing surfaces of your teeth, use short sweeping strokes and circles so the bristles get into the pits and crevices.

If your gums have receded anywhere, be sure to brush higher in that area.

Don't swallow toothpaste, and rinse the toothpaste out of your mouth after brushing.

For additional advice and tips, consult the best San Diego orthodontist.

carrots as toothbrushes
Photo: - 2004 - 2005 Dirk De Kegel (Sabam Belgium)

Natural Teeth Cleaners

Crunchy foods, like raw apples, celery and carrots, scrub your teeth while you eat.

In contrast, pasty foods like peanut butter will not only not scrub your teeth but they will stick around too long and increase tooth decay.

Cheese contains calcium and coats your teeth with the mineral, which helps fight tooth decay.

Natural Apple Cider Vinegar is very good at strengthening your teeth from the inside. But, you should rinse your mouth out after drinking it straight and don't brush your teeth right after drinking vinegar. Some people think that brushing with natural apple cider vinegar would remove stains. Just as with hydrogen peroxide and baking soda, vinegar used straight or used on teeth too often can cause enamel loss.

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