How Aggressive Tooth Brushing Can Harm the Teeth and Gums By Alex Hecht on November 24, 2017

A collection of toothbrusesThe team at Staten Island Aesthetic & Implant Dentist believes that proper preventative care is an important part of good dental health. That's why we always stress the importance of regular brushing and flossing to our patients. It can avoid the need for restorative dentistry procedures and other advanced treatments.

Of course, there are times when people don't brush and floss right. Let's consider how aggressive oral hygiene practices can lead to dental damage. We'll then consider treatments for these issues and offer tips for improving your oral hygiene practices.

There's a Wrong Way to Brush and Floss

Many people are surprised to learn that there's a wrong way to brush and floss. This doesn't refer to not brushing or flossing enough either. If you brush and floss too aggressively, this can cause serious damage to the teeth and gums.

It's true: if you're not brushing and flossing properly, you wind up doing far more harm than good. The telltale signs that you're brushing too forcefully include:

  • Tenderness or soreness after brushing your teeth
  • Bleeding gums after brushing your teeth
  • Irritated gums after brushing your teeth
  • Tooth sensitivity after brushing your teeth

Wearing Down Tooth Enamel

Even though tooth enamel is one of the hardest substances in the entire body, it is not indestructible. When you brush too forcefully, you can gradually wear down the topmost surface of your teeth. This exposes the underlying dentin layer of the tooth structure, resulting in tooth sensitivity, weakened teeth, and the potential for severe tooth decay and tooth fractures.

Gum Trauma and Recession

When you brush and floss too forcefully, there's also a major issue with damaging the gums. Gum recession refers to the loss of gum tissue along the gumline. This reveals more of the underlying root structure of the teeth, causing tooth sensitivity and the potential for tooth decay to develop under the gumline.

Treating the Damage That's Been Done

When your teeth and gums have been damaged, there are a few treatment options to consider.

  • Treatments for the Teeth – When the tooth enamel is worn away, there are many dental restorations that can help replace this missing tooth structure. Dental bonding, fillings, inlays, onlays, or crowns are generally the most ideal options.

  • Treatments for the Gums – When it comes to treating gum recession, the best option is gum grafting. This oral surgery procedure uses donor soft tissue or artificial gum grafts to rebuild the gumline and protect the tooth roots from exposure.

During a consultation at our practice, we can go over the ideal treatments for you and your needs. We will be sure to tailor the treatments carefully and answer any questions or concerns you may have.

Tips for Good Oral Hygiene

In order to avoid tooth damage and gum recession, consider these tips:

  • Be gentle yet thorough when brushing your teeth
  • Only use a toothbrushes with sift bristles
  • Use toothbrushes with small heads to properly clean all tooth surfaces
  • Consider a toothpaste with low abrasiveness
  • Don't snap or saw with dental floss

Learn More About Good Oral Hygiene

For more information about good oral hygiene practices and how you can ensure your teeth and gums remain healthy at all times, be sure to contact an experienced dentist. The team at Staten Island Aesthetic & Implant Dentist is here to help you smile with confidence and good health.

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