The Do’s and (Definitely) Don’ts of Dental DIYs

At SimplyFloss, we’re all for trying new things when it comes to our dental hygiene but certain “hacks” popping up on social media have us clenching our teeth in disbelief.

So-called dental DIYs  showing people filing down their teeth with a nail file and flossing their own hair have been making the rounds on TikTok in recent weeks much to the dismay of the dental community. Just as alarming? Videos of TikTokers bonding fake fangs to their teeth with superglue were also trending in the period leading up to Halloween.

We’re not here to spoil anyone’s fun, but we need to state the obvious: these DIYs are REALLY bad for your teeth and gums.

Unlike hair, skin and nails, tooth enamel doesn’t grow back. Filing down teeth and gluing on prosthetics can cause irreversible damage to the tooth’s structure or in extreme cases, kill the tooth entirely. Any changes to the shape or texture of your teeth should only (we repeat, only) be done by a licensed dental professional.

As for flossing with human hair, we get that it seems like a nature-made solution but it’s absolutely not a good choice for your oral health. Not only can it cause gum damage, but residue from hair products don’t belong anywhere inside your mouth. We’re clearly big fans of SimplyFloss for cleaning in between teeth but support the use of any reputable floss or flossing product that works for you.

Now that we’ve gone over the don’ts of dental DIYs, why don’t we focus on some dos? Here are some of our favourites!

  1. Drink More Water: Water is the healthiest drink for your smile and your body as it helps to cleanse teeth and discourages tooth decay. Drinking water is especially important while mask-wearing to combat dry mouth and swish away bacteria.
  1. Brush 2X a Day with Good Technique:We’ve all heard this one before, but it bears repeating! Frequent brushing helps teeth stay whiter and healthier. Angle bristles toward the gumline at a 45-degree angle with just enough pressure to make tissue a lighter color. Use gentle small strokes focussing on only one or two teeth at a time.
  1. Floss Regularly (It’s Never Too Early to Start!): Flossing isn’t the most popular hygiene habit, but it should be considering how important it is! Foregoing floss can lead to bad breath, decay and other dental issues. In fact, not flossing means you are missing more than one-third of your tooth surface!

You don’t have to resort to painful or dangerous methods to achieve the smile you desire. A few simple tweaks to your hygiene routine and a consultation with your dental professional for more dramatic changes can help you on your way! 

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