The enamel covering the top of your teeth is the hardest part of your body, but your teeth actually need to be treated gently.
The enamel covering the top of your teeth is the hardest part of your body, and for a good reason. Whenever you are chewing food, forces of up to 30 kg are exerted on your teeth. That is roughly the weight of four bowling balls.
Since the enamel is hard, it may seem logical that it requires hard treatment – vigorous brushing and extreme pressure. But that’s not actually the case. Here are three reasons why:
1. Soft brushing is three times more effective
Soft toothbrushes have soft, flexible bristles that can cover the entire shape of your tooth. The more bristles a brush has, the finer and softer they can be.
On the other hand, hard bristles have to be spaced much more widely and are not flexible enough to remove dental plaque from the entire tooth.
2. Gentle doesn’t hurt and keeps your breath fresh
A common problem for people using a hard toothbrush is neglect. They often don’t clean the delicate edges of the gum, because it hurts to brush them.
But those edges are exactly the areas where the bacteria thrive. When not cleaned properly, you allow bacteria to proliferate, which can cause gum inflammation, bad breath and eventually even tooth loss.
Using a soft toothbrush doesn’t hurt and it keeps your teeth healthy and your breath fresh.
3. Soft brushing protects your gums
Dental plaque: the enemy of your hard teeth is the same as the enemy of your soft and delicate gums surrounding them. The soft filaments remove dental plaque gently without damaging your gums.
Scrubbing your teeth vigorously with hard bristles will actually result in a receding gum line. The hard bristles slowly scrape away your gums until they stop protecting the neck of the tooth, which is much more sensitive to pain.
And, yes, this happens even if you listen to your dentist and brush your teeth in slow circular movements like you are supposed to. If the brush is too hard, this won’t really help.
When you are choosing a toothbrush, ask yourself: What kind of a ritual would I like to have on a daily basis? A gentle one that leaves me feeling refreshed, or a rough, painful one?