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Dental health of Germans improved: tips for good oral hygiene
Nothing prevents tooth decay, gingivitis and toothache like brushing your teeth regularly. Conscientious oral hygiene should therefore be encouraged from an early age. Among other things, technology is very important when it comes to dental care.
Prevent tooth decay and toothache
According to experts, regular tooth brushing is the most effective measure to efficiently prevent tooth decay and prevent gingivitis and toothache. The right technology is also very important. According to dentists, shaking and painting is particularly useful. In addition, you should properly clean the interdental spaces at least once a day.
From an early age
Conscientious oral hygiene cannot begin early enough. Even milk teeth need a lot of care. Parents are advised to check the dental care of their offspring until the end of primary school. The Fifth German Oral Health Study, which has just been presented by the German Dental Association (BZÄK) and the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Dentists (KZBV), shows that much has improved in the field of dental care.
Dental health in Germans has improved
According to the study, Germans care for their teeth much better today than they did 20 years ago. This can also be seen in concrete figures: “Eight out of ten of the 12-year-old children (81 percent) are caries-free today. The number of caries-free teeth doubled between 1997 and 2014, ”says the study.
However, there were improvements not only among the youngest: "Only half as many younger adults (35 to 44 year olds) still have tooth decay disease compared to 1997."
Tips for conscientious oral hygiene
So that the positive trend continues, here are some tips for conscientious dental care to help. Dirk Kropp from the proDente initiative gives an overview in a message from the dpa news agency. Timing is very important: teeth should actually be brushed after every meal, but this is not always feasible. Therefore, according to Kropp, the following applies: at least twice a day.
Best after breakfast and especially after dinner. Dental care is much more important in the evening than the next morning. "If you can, you should wait 30 minutes, especially if you've had acidic drinks or food," said the expert. If this is not possible, the teeth are cleaned immediately after eating, because brushing is more important than waiting.
Brushing your teeth should take an average of two minutes, but for some groups such as seniors or children, more time may be required. The interdental spaces should also be cleaned once a day.
Experts recommend the KAI technology
The so-called KAI technique is usually recommended by experts. As Kropp explains, this means that first the occlusal surfaces, then the outer surfaces and then the inside of the teeth are cleaned. However, this is only an orientation. "It is important to prepare a system with which you can brush your teeth as if you were sleeping, the process should be automated."
During the six-monthly check-up at the dentist or during professional tooth cleaning, you can inquire whether the teeth have been cleaned well enough. Coloring tablets are sometimes used there, which provide information about where the teeth are not optimally cleaned.
Too much pressure when brushing is discouraged, as this can damage the enamel. "The pressure should be 150 grams, everyone can try it with a kitchen scale."
The right equipment
As a rule, dentists recommend brushes with soft to medium-hard, rounded bristles and short heads. These also make it easier to reach the back teeth. According to Kropp, whether manual or electric is in principle not so important: "Both require a certain brushing technique to clean the teeth thoroughly."
According to the experts, the toothpaste should contain fluoride - 500 ppm in children and 1,500 ppm in adults. So-called whitening toothpastes with coarse cleaning bodies can damage the enamel and are therefore not recommended according to Kropp. Good quality doesn't have to be expensive either. The consumer magazine “Öko-Test” recently reported that cheap toothpaste is often better than branded toothpaste. (ad)