5-speed listening (Level 3)

We clean our teeth the wrong way



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Scientists say we clean our teeth the wrong way. Researchers from University College, London found that most of the advice that dentists give us is very different. They add that we have been cleaning our teeth the wrong way. The researchers looked at tooth-brushing advice in dental textbooks, toothpaste instructions and dental clinics. They found five different basic ways of tooth-brushing and decided all of them were incorrect. Most of the methods involve moving the toothbrush along the teeth, with the brush moving round and round in small circular movements. The researchers said we should stop doing this and use a back-and-forth movement instead.

Aubrey Sheilam, lead author of the study and professor of dental public health, said: "The public needs to have sound information on the best method to brush their teeth." The research suggests not brushing teeth too much. More than twice a day damages the enamel on the teeth. The recommended time for brushing is no longer than three minutes each time. The research also says using too much pressure and brushing your teeth too hard will also damage teeth. Researchers also advised not cleaning your teeth immediately after eating. This is when acid is strongest in your mouth and this acid will damage teeth. A final recommendation was to clean the tongue too because it also has a lot of bacteria.

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