Patient Education and Tips from Your North Edmonton Dentist

Brushing Your Teeth

Brushing should be done at least twice a day, and may be done after every meal. That being said, after eating or drinking anything acidic, it is important to wait at least an hour before brushing as to avoid damaging the teeth.

  1. Wet your toothbrush slightly. Dry, your bristles may scratch and aggravate your gums.
  2. Apply a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. The toothpaste should contain the relevant amount of fluoride, which differs for children and adults.
  3. Point the bristles at a 45 degree angle to your teeth and gums, ensuring that they cover both your tooth and gum. Use a back and forth motion, cleaning 2-3 teeth at a time. After cleaning the front, make sure to brush the inner surfaces of the teeth as well. Don’t forget the back molars!
  4. Brush gently along the gum line, once again remembering to reach the back molars.
  5. Brush your tongue! This will get rid of bacteria, and help with your breath.
  6. After brushing, which should take about two minutes, spit out your toothpaste, and rinse your mouth with water.

How to Keep Your Teeth White

First and foremost, try your best to avoid products that will stain your teeth. This includes coffee, tea, cola and red wine. If you do have to consume these beverages, consider using a straw, so the liquid can bypass your teeth.

If you’re a smoker, stop smoking. Beyond the other health repercussions, smoking is terrible for your teeth, staining them and damaging your gum and bones.

Use a whitening toothpaste. The effects will not be as dramatic as professional whitening, as toothpastes can only target superficial stains, but toothpaste can still help to maintain the whiteness of your teeth. Steer clear of do-it-yourself whitening concoctions, however, and if in doubt, consult your dentist before trying any new products.


Flossing doesn’t need to be done as frequently as brushing, though it is important to floss at least once a day. Right before bed is a great time to do so.

  1. Take about 18 inches of floss, wrapping the floss around your fingers.
  2. Grasp the floss, pulled tightly, between your thumbs and index fingers.
  3. Gently insert the floss between each pair of teeth, using gentle back and forth motions to clean the teeth and gums. Make sure to go up above the gumline.
  4. Floss between each of your teeth, being careful not to neglect the back molars. If necessary, clean the floss between insertions.


Making sure your gums are healthy is just as important as taking care of your actual teeth. Ideally, your gums should form a tight seal with your teeth that bacteria cannot penetrate.

Physically, your gums should be firm, and not bleed after brushing or flossing. They are typically a light or coral shade of pink, though this can vary slightly based on ethnic origin.