Dental floss and brushing with tooth paste should be part of your personal oral hygiene. Teeth ought to be flossed at least once per day (in the evening - just before brushing).

Important: Your Diet!

Improper diet is one of the most common causes of tooth decay. There is not one particular food item that will entirely prevent dental caries. However, a proper and balanced diet has a significant impact on your dental health. Crunchy foods, raw fruits and vegetables, should be chosen over soft-boiled, sticky, and mushy foods, as they strengthen and protect the teeth and stimulate the flow of saliva. As a result, the dental apparatus increases in strength and a self-purification process is allowed to take place. Soft bread, cake, sweet dried fruits, etc., have the opposite effect. Leftover deposits on and between the teeth form a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Low-sugar and solid foods, on the other hand, prevent bacteria from multiplying, which directly assists in the prevention of tooth decay and gum disease. Your teeth should be brushed after every meal.

Tip: We recommend the consumption of sugar-free snacks (watch for hidden sugars in beverages!).
Sweets (like chocolate) are better consumed once a day and should be followed by a thorough brushing of your teeth.

Reaching into often neglected spaces

A toothbrush alone is not enough for cleaning: areas in and around the contact surfaces of adjoining teeth will always be left untouched. It is essential to use dental floss to reach these areas and to clear out any sticky bacterial impurities. In case of bigger gaps or where the gums have withdrawn, an interdental brush will assist. It is very likely for bacteria to quietly multiply and potentially cause interdental caries in hidden recesses (between the teeth).

Very important: a simple mouthwash rinse (which is usually favored by patients) has no noticeable effect, because only direct physical contact with the above mentioned devices will actually remove accumulated plaque!

How to use floss

First, clip off a section of about 50 cm long and wrap the 10 cm long ends of the floss around the middle fingers of both hands.
Then span a short piece of approx. 2 cm between your two index fingers or thumbs and gently slide the string into the gap of your teeth.
You will feel a certain amount of resistance when the string passes through the contact point of two adjoining teeth. Once it has reached the proximity of the gum, press towards the neck of one tooth and pull the string back out maintaining pressure along the wall of the tooth. Repeat the same process with the inner wall of the other tooth (same crevice).
Move the string below the contact point up and down several times to scrape away any leftover layers of plaque.
Then wind a bit of the string up and use the fresh section in the next gap. Important: Be sure not to leave out any crevices.

Note: Do not pull the floss back and forth horizontally! This can injure the gums and necks of the teeth, and will not aid the cleaning process.

Many kinds of dental floss are available: thick, thin, fluffy, waxed, and unwaxed. Some will have a fluoride or a Teflon coating. Models with small plastic tabs on the ends may be easier to handle, but also increase the likeliness of injury when going through tight points of contact.
Interdental brushes and Superfloss are definitely recommended with implants and bridges. A tooth or implant-supported bridge (under the pontic) has to be cleaned with Superfloss!

Interdental brushes come in different sizes and shapes. They are similar to small bottle brushes or fir trees. The interdental brush is not to be used with toothpaste. In fact, a bit of moisture is all it needs to perform well.

How to brush teeth with a toothbrush and toothpaste

1. The wrong way

Most people think that brushing teeth is a fast and straightforward procedure. Many apply the brush wrongly and harm their teeth as a result.
The most common misconception is that teeth have be scrubbed along horizontally. This behavior, in combination with high pressure, will cause damage to the surfaces of the teeth. As a result, teeth develop a higher sensitivity and wedge-shaped defects at the necks are formed. This poor brushing technique will not cover actual problem areas (spaces inside and between the teeth).

2. The proper way

For proper cleaning place the toothbrush at an angle (of about 45 ° to the axis of the tooth) so that the bristles lightly penetrate the spaces between the teeth and the gum line. Then move the brush in a jogging motion from "red” to “white" (going from the gum towards the surface of the teeth). This way, plaque is loosened and scraped off; otherwise the bacteria would just be transferred under the line of the gum. Do Not Press Firmly! Increased pressure bends the bristles, which reduces the effectiveness of the cleaning process. In the long run, teeth and gums may be damaged by excessive pressure.

First brush the outer surfaces (two or three teeth at a time) 6 times from red to white. Next, brush the chewing surfaces to extract plaque from the depressions. The fissures (the narrow grooves of the molars) are generally affected by plaque as well (see chapter on caries).
Then brush the inner surfaces as you did the outside ones.
Important: brushing should never takes less than 3 minutes!
Note: Do not brush right after eating acidic foods, drinks, fruits, and vegetables, because acids soften the enamel. Rinse with water or mouthwash and wait at least half of an hour before you properly brush your teeth.
Be advised that the best toothbrush (electric or manual) is useless if not used regularly. A toothbrush will only function properly for as long the bristles are straight. Replace your toothbrush every three months or (the least) when the bristles have turned to the sides.
Only special devices used in professional dental cleaning can remove stubborn tartar, calculus, discolored plaque, etc. (recommended every six months).