Teeth Care!

    GUESS WHAT? That dreary old commercial that admonishes one and all to "...brush after each meal," is right! Ask any dentist. But what is the correct way to brush your teeth? Many people really don't know - so here's the way.
     Use a standard three-row (or larger) medium soft natural bristle (nylon is all right in a pinch) tooth brush. Dampen the brush and put the tooth paste on it. Brush your teeth firmly but gently, remembering never to push the gums away from the teeth. A slow round and round motion is fine, but don't press down hard on the "up" movement. Be sure to reach 'way back on each side of your mouth and brush the tops and sides of those molars! Last of all, rinse your brush off, clean your tongue with it and then thoroughly rinse your mouth out.
     Do this after each meal. If you can't at school or when you're out, be sure to rinse your mouth well with cool (not cold) water. This keeps any stray decay-making particles of food from nestling in your teeth.
     Never subject your teeth from sudden changes from hot to cold beverages or foods. This will crack the porcelain. For grayish of yellowish teeth, use baking soda once or twice a week instead of toothpaste. Contrary to some opinions, baking soda is not a harsh abrasive, it simply takes off a little of the tartar that makes teeth discolor.
     Since we all know that pleasant breath and a winning smile are very important, we must remember to test ourselves on a close friend or parent once and a while. Bad breath is usually caused by bad teeth, so be sure you visit your dentist every six months. If you feel a tooth aching or see your gum bleeding, don't wait a minute to notify a teacher or parent and find out what to do.
For those who have food-holding gaps in certain areas of their teeth, the use of dental floss is advised. This strong silk thread carefully cleans out any food from between the teeth that the tooth brush may have missed. Food allowed to remain in the crevities turns sour and soon smells bad.
     For those of you who have the misfortune to have "crowded" teeth, crooked teeth, "buck" teeth or widely spaced teeth, the man to see an orthodontist. He is a fellow who specializes in molding the shape of your choppers. Your dentist will recommend one if he believes you need it. Braces or clamps of some kind may be needed to restore your teeth to what is considered normal. They are uncomfortable and take a long time, but we all know it is well worth it.
     Don't despair if you have to have this corrective work done. Just thank heaven in this day and age these things can happen! You are lucky that you will not have to go through life with an unattractive mouth.
     For those of you who aren't millionaires, here is a tip. In most of the larger cities, or cities where here is a college or university, there are cheap (or even free) dental clinics. Ask around and you can find out how to get them to help you. Also, the Department of Health may be called upon in certain cases. There is no reason to hesitate in doing this. Your folks pay taxes, so you are entitled to this service.
     In towns where there is a dental school (or medical school), even expensive orthodontic work can be gotten for little or no money. Students there may learn from putting your braces on you, and you will have something wonderful happen that you couldn't have otherwise afforded!

This was taken from the February 1965 issue of 16 Magazine, page 27 (if you care!)


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