Humans have been using toothbrushes to remove food from teeth for thousands of years. Early toothbrushes were sticks with frayed ends, & later brushes were made from bone, wood or ivory & animal hairs. We have come a long way since then, & toothbrushes today are very effective at removing food & plaque & keeping your teeth & gums clean.
Why Brush Your Teeth?
Brushing your teeth removes food & plaque, which is bacteria that eats away at your teeth & can build up & become tartar, a hardened form of plaque. Without daily brushing, plaque & tartar can build up, & the acids that they produce can erode your tooth enamel & irritate your gums. Brushing your teeth can help prevent cavities & gum disease, so be sure to brush every day!
Types of Toothbrushes
There are two types of toothbrushes: manual & powered. Both types are equally effective at cleaning your teeth, but powered toothbrushes can be fun for children & easy to use for people who have trouble using manual toothbrushes. Use whichever type is easiest for you.
Bristles on toothbrushes vary in toughness, from soft to hard, & most dentists recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Hard bristles can actually damage your enamel & irritate your gums!
No matter which type of toothbrush you use, you should brush twice a day for two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste & replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months, or whenever the bristles seem frayed.