National Smile Month Mantra ‘Spit, Don’t Rinse’

This year National smile month runs from May 15 to June 15 and throughout this period there’s to be a fun led educational drive for healthy mouths giving people the confidence to smile and so creating a healthier happier world.

The drive is to communicate the importance of good oral hygiene through the public media, schools and various events organised by the dental profession. The three massages the UK Dental Health Foundation works hard to deliver are:

  • • Brush twice a day using fluoride toothpaste
  • • Cut down on sugary food and drinks
  • • Regularly visit your dentist

It is surprising how just a little change in our daily routine can contribute so much to having and keeping a healthy smile.

For example after following the night-time brush just spit! Don’t rinse, don’t even use a mouthwash! Yes that is the advice

from Dr Nigel Carter OBE, CEO of the Oral Health Foundation of Great Britain. The thinking behind this advice is that rinsing

washes away the fluoride and so not allowing it time to have any action on the teeth. By not rinsing the fluoride has a

opportunity to work away on your teeth as you sleep. As for children the advice is toothbrushing should start once all

teeth have appeared. Use a toothbrush with a small head and soft bristles in small, circular movements and get the child

to concentrate on one quadrant at a time finished by spitting and no rinsing.

Another good routine to get into is checking to see all areas of teeth are being thoroughly brushed. Use dental

plaque disclosing tablets to reveal areas where toothbrushing is ineffective so allowing for the build-up

of dangerous plaque. Use of plaque disclosing tablets is also critical for individuals who have recently had braces

fitted and need to learn where food is accumulating around the brace.