What’s on Your Orthodontist’s Sink in Brookings? – Ask Dr. Meyer
Have you ever wondered what products your orthodontist prefers in their own home? Well, good news — we asked Dr. Meyer what his picks were and he was happy to share.
If you’re curious, read on!
Choosing the Right Toothbrush
Hard bristles might seem like they would clean better but, but they don’t. Worse, harder bristles can do damage to root surfaces of teeth and cause gums to recede thus exposing the root surfaces and wearing grooves in the root surface.
What’s that mean? Using firm bristled brushes can lead to teeth that are sensitive to temperature.
If you want to do best by your teeth, you should invest in an electric toothbrush. They’re much more effective. The best brands are Sonicare and Oral-B … and you guessed it, they’re a little more expensive. You get what you pay for in this category!
Whether you’re brushing with a manual toothbrush or an electric, make sure you’re changing out your brush every 3 months.
Water piks are good addition to your oral hygiene routine – especially if you have braces. But remember, it’s to be used in addition to brushing and flossing. It is not a substitute for brushing or flossing!
Floss Like Our Boss (Dr. Meyer!)
Floss is the least controversial of any of these product categories! Truly any kind of floss will do the job, as long as you do the work.
Dr. Meyer personally prefers the flossing tape because it slides through easily and has a broader band to help clean.
Dr. Meyer’s Favorite Toothpaste
This one may surprise you – Dr. Meyer honestly doesn’t have a favorite toothpaste. He has just two strong requirements: A screw on cap dispenser (no flip up caps please, they’re messy!), and it must contain fluoride.
You can make up your own mind on cap/dispenser, but be sure you’re choosing a toothpaste that contains fluoride. This is especially important if you have braces, as it can help prevent tooth decay.
Your Orthodontist’s Mouth Wash Advice
Personally, Dr. Meyer prefers Listerine. He doesn’t love the burn, but it seems to work the best. He’s quick to add that when choosing your mouthwash, brand is not critical. The most important thing when choosing a mouth wash is to check the label and make sure it does not have sugar in it.
Children should also avoid mouthwashes that contain alcohol. Picking a sugar-free mouthwash for children is the best way to go.
Adults, if you like the burning sensation when you rinse (or don’t mind it), go for it. It is not damaging as long as it’s only used only once a day. If you are using mouth wash more than once a day a non-alcohol mouthwash may be better. If you don’t like the burn, choose a non-alcohol option… that doesn’t contain sugar!
What About Using Peroxide as a Mouth Wash?
Peroxide is a great cleanser but you have to be careful on the strength in your mouth. It doesn’t take much to be effective! Generally 1.5% is recommended.
Simply mixing 3% peroxide with equal parts water will give you an inexpensive rinse. If that’s still too strong, you can add more water.
What about Rinsing with Coconut Oil?
There is a push out there for rinsing your mouth with coconut oil for cleaning. This will not cause any damage, but it is not a substitute for brushing and flossing. To get any benefit at all, you have to rinse for a very long time.
There is a lot of misinformation on the internet about this remedy, so we’ll write a longer post about it later. For now, our advice would be to brush, floss and use mouthwash. If you want to rinse with coconut oil as well, go for it.
The Most Important Thing…
When it comes to buying products to take care of your teeth, there are just a handful of simple rules to follow: No sugar, remember your fluoride!
For the most part, the particular products really don’t matter. What does matter is that you’re brushing, flossing after meals and rinsing with mouthwash once a day.
What are your favorite oral care products? Let us know on Facebook!