Opinions differ on how best to keep our teeth and gums clean and even the experts can’t seem to agree on the optimum technique for maintaining good dental health. However, if a new study is to be believed, the best way to brush the teeth may be easier than you might think. A professor of dentistry claims to have come up with the definitive answer.
Professor Aubrey Sheiham, Emeritus Professor of Dental Public Health, found the available advice on how to brush ‘unacceptably inconsistent’ and believes that the public should be given some ‘sound information’ on the best brushing method. She said ‘If people hear one thing from a dental association, another from a toothbrush company and something else from their dentist, no wonder they are confused about how to brush.’ The study revealed an ‘array of advice from different sources.’
Sheiham added ‘Dental associations need to be consistent about what method to recommend, based on how effective the method is. Most worryingly, the methods recommended by dental associations are not the same as the best ones mentioned in dental textbooks.’ The study showed that there is no evidence to suggest that a more complicated brushing technique will work better than a simple scrubbing motion.
Professor Sheiham advised people to ‘Brush gently with a simple horizontal scrubbing motion, with the brush at a 45 degree angle to get to the dental plaque. Avoid brushing too hard; hold the brush with a pencil grip rather than a fist. This simple method is perfectly effective at keeping your gums healthy.’