I didn’t brush my teeth as a child and teen because I had energy issues and I struggled to actually do them; I still struggle to do it today.

I rarely floss because it seems like a lot of work for seemingly little gains.

I got plaque again after getting teeth cleaned some weeks ago. I guess my teeth is screwed…

Grew up poor, no insurance so couldn’t go to the dentist.

Saw on Reddit to get an electric toothbrush so I got one when I was younger. Brush twice a day with it. Never got cavities with 5 years of no dentist.

Now I also floss once a day, tongue scrape once a day, mouth wash once a day.

If you do any one thing, buy an electric toothbrush.

Flossing is really important. It’s hard to comprehend the gains but since bacteria grow exponentially, removing the small amount between your teeth has outsized benefits.

I bought a water jet for flossing purposes, it’s a lot easier and cleaner than dental floss

My parents have one and it’s pretty nice. I want to get one for me too.

Soviet Snake
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AFAIK you can have plaques many times that doesn’t mean your teeth are fucked.

Now this is my technique to do it as often as I can and not procrastinate it. I eat while watching some film or TV show, or whatever, so I generally finish eating before whatever it is I’m watching finishes, so once it ends, (I always leave the floss on my PC’s desk, so it’s near and it’s not an excuse to not do it) I floss while watching, then I brush my teeth while watching, and then I wash. It has improved my dental health by like a 50%.

Amicese
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AFAIK you can have plaques many times that doesn’t mean your teeth are fucked.

Sources? I would like that to be true.

Soviet Snake
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I mean, I’ve had plaques many times and I just go to the dentist and they put a drill like tool on them and it’s gone.

Do you mean tartar? Plaque is a clear biofilm of microorganisms. Tartar is hardened plaque presenting as a yellow or brown deposit of calcium which further encourages bacterial proliferation.

Amicese
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I was thinking of plaque; I never got tartar.

I brush my teeths after every meal and I try to not eat the enormous quantities of sugar that the food industry tries to shove in you.

Domoŝomo
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Recently my dentist advised i get some special high floride toothpaste ($25 for 2 tubes from the dental office), which i am supposed to use once a day and leave on my teeth (spitting out the excess) instead of rinsing. I’m told the floride will be absorbed into the outer layer of my teeth, making it more resistant to bacteria. Maybe you could look into something like that.

@MerchantsOfMisery
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I brush my teeth 2-3x a day, floss a few times a week (I know, I know…), and pray that I don’t get a cavity because I don’t have dental insurance.

I also try to drink water and avoid sugary drinks. I think one really important thing is brushing your teeth before bed, because not doing so gives bacteria a lot of time to do their thing relatively undisturbed.

Oh and try to aim for 2-3 minutes of brushing. I used to have a nice electric toothbrush with at timer but it died, so I just set my digital watch’s alarm for 2 minutes and every 30 seconds I switch quadrants. It’s all about not giving germs a huge window of time to grow exponentially.

@haych
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I don’t floss, but I brush once, sometimes twice a day.

My dentist says my teeth are in great health, and considering he’d get more money from me if he said they were bad and needed work I am inclined to believe him.

Brush.

Don’t go to the dentist.

Be kind to yourself for what you do manage, look for any ways you can make things easier for yourself. Can you keep your toothbrush, and a bottle of water and something to spit into, near where you sleep, if you don’t usually get to the bathroom before sleeping? Or if you do make it there, could you get out your toothbrush and toothpaste in advance, when you’ve got more energy, so there’s not so many steps when you’re in there when you’re tired? Do you have mouthwash, as a quick fix if you’re too shattered for brushing and flossing?

On flossing, I couldn’t motivate to floss my whole life, same as you, waste of time - I wasn’t getting cavities, and when I flossed my gums would bleed and when I didn’t they didn’t, so it felt totally counterintuitive.

Since I got a filling a couple of years ago I’ve been trying to find something that works, before I need more.

I’d seen the disposable single use picks with a piece of floss, but I couldn’t feel goodabout that much plastic waste, and it was still too hard to reach back teeth when I tried a couple.

Then I got a kit like this, it was the equivalent of about $4:

Between the two different sizes, the whole process is closer to 2 minutes vs closer to 10 with floss (I’m sure both would be quicker with practice), I’ve seen blood a lot less, there’s a satisfying amount of gunk that comes out even after brushing well, and I tell myself (hopefully accurately) that any time I manage to use them, even if it’s only once a week, is a favour to myself vs before, when literally the only times those places got regularly cleaned was at the dentist.

Amicese
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“Can you keep your toothbrush, and a bottle of water and something to spit into, near where you sleep, if you don’t usually get to the bathroom before sleeping?”

Yes.

“Or if you do make it there,”

I usually don’t.

“could you get out your toothbrush and toothpaste in advance, when you’ve got more energy, so there’s not so many steps when you’re in there when you’re tired?”

Probably. I haven’t tried that out though.

“Do you have mouthwash, as a quick fix if you’re too shattered for brushing and flossing?”

Yes, but I’m uncertain if the mouthwash actually does anything.

I have energy issues too. It really sucks passing out because I have sinus issues too and end up breathing through my mouth when I sleep sometimes.

Flossing daily helps me. Also using the little hook tool to scrape under the gums.

The biggest game changer is baking soda and peroxide toothpaste though. Even if you don’t have time for a full cleaning the suds keeps your pH in balance and prevents growth for a couple hours after brushing. Regular toothpaste doesn’t do shit.

Amicese
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Also using the little hook tool to scrape under the gums.

So that is the use of the hook thingy on floss picks…

The biggest game changer is baking soda and peroxide toothpaste though

How do I make it?

No it’s like the one the dentist uses. My local dollar store sells them.

No need to make it, just get it from the store.

Amicese
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No it’s like the one the dentist uses. My local dollar store sells them.

Oh. What is the hook on the floss picks used for then?

Probably the same thing but plastic doesn’t work anywhere near as good as metal. Actually you want the tip to be really pointy sharp too, so the one in the picture I linked sucks too.

erpicht
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Keeping track of my brushing and flossing helped me become consistent. I use the Android application Loop Habit Tracker. It might also be helpful to designate a set time for brushing, say, right after waking up.

I was going to say literally the same. What a great app. Btw it’s better to brush after breakfast. (at least imho since if done before breakfast would taste like thootpaste ..)_

erpicht
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My usually breakfast is black coffee with cold oats in milk, which uh, doesn’t leave much room for a toothpaste flavor :) but yeah, brushing afterwards is typically nicer; I was just too inconsistent to make it work

@Faresh
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For me it’s enough to be aware of the consequences. If I don’t brush for extended periods of time I get pretty bad gingivitis which can cause so much pain that I have difficulty eating anything without crying, if I am unlucky. So I brush at least twice a day.

If on a day I have to rely on social interaction I tend to brush after every single meal, no matter how small it is (with the exception of water), and anytime I feel like my mouth is getting stale. I do not want to talk to people while having a bad breath, the same way I don’t want to smell the bad breath of other people.

Flossing is also super important, because if something gets stuck between your teeth, it will very likely cause an inflammation. I however, only floss when I know there is something stuck between my teeth or suspect there could be.

I rarely floss because it seems like a lot of work for seemingly little gains.

I suggest you take a look at water flossers. Flossing, while a lot of work, is sometimes necessary when you’ve eaten something stringy that gets stuck between your teeth. Having it be stuck between your teeth for a day(s) will result in cavities and inflammation.

@leanleft
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maybe neutralize the acidity frequently by swishing baking soda.
hydrogen peroxide is another good mouthwash.
edit: do not brush directly after eating acidic food.

@toneverends
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If you can get close to eliminating sugar and simple starches from your daily diet, that alone will prevent a lot of plaque build-up and even slow/prevent advancement of tooth decay (within reason… Please see a dentist and get tooth decay fixed before it destroys your quality of life).

Sugary foods include things like dried fruit. Simple starches include crackers and most bread (I find a crusty open-crumb sourdough to cause less plaque buildup than a fluffy yeast loaf, despite being basically the same ingredients.)

@sproid
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What do you mean by

energy issues

lethargic or hyperactive? If is about lethargic you should address your mental health hard to improve your mood. If its hypeactive, the same advise but focus more on organization and priorities. Like others have suggested floss while doing other things like on the computer or watching TV. Use any tools that help you keep you productive like Calendar, Task apps and its reminders, alarms, Notes app and, use the widgets on the Phone HomeScreen.

On the oral hygiene topic I’ll say if you can, buy an electric tooth brush. You can buy a good one for less than $50 on ebay. I also notice that using a regular floss was tedious until I tried a better one like ‘Listerine Ultraclean Mint Floss’. Regarding Mouthwashs there a various types of it. Try which one you really like the most and that will help you use it more often.

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