Importance of dental hygiene
Brushing one’s teeth has long been considered an important part of dental care and good personal health.
As long ago as 3000 BC ancient Egyptians constructed crude toothbrushes from twigs and leaves to clean their teeth.
Similarly, other cultures such as the Greeks, Romans, and Indians cleaned their teeth with twigs.
Some would fray one end of the twig so that it could penetrate between the teeth more effectively.
Thankfully, modern mouth cleaning equipment have evolved markedly.
Modern medical research has shown that brushing teeth properly can prevent cavities, and periodontal, or gum disease, which causes at least one-third of adult tooth loss.
If teeth are not brushed correctly and frequently, it could lead to the calcification of saliva minerals, forming tartar.
Repeated medical research has shown that poor dental health has been associated with heart disease and shortened life expectancy.
Modern day toothbrushing as a regular habit became prevalent in Europe from the end of the 17th century.
The first mass produced toothbrush was developed in England in 1780 (but was never actually used).
In the United States, although toothbrushes were available at the end of the 19th century, the practice did not become widespread until after the Second World War, when US soldiers continued the toothbrushing that had been required during their military service.
Dental bacteria thrive in hard to reach areas – such as between your teeth. So it is important to clean between your teeth to prevent gum disease.
Even if you floss only ever so often, it is better than never and can make a difference to the health of your mouth. Your dentist or hygienist will advise you on how best to use both floss and inter-dental brushes.