Hesperian Health Guides

Clean Your Teeth Every Day

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HealthWiki > Where There Is No Dentist > Chapter 1: Your Own Teeth and Gums > Clean Your Teeth Every Day

If you do not clean properly, the food that is left on your teeth can hurt the teeth as well as the gums near them.

Bits of food stay longer in grooves and ‘hiding places’. This is where both tooth and gum problems start.

a person's teeth, showing 3 problem areas.
on top
the teeth
near the gums
Here are 3 places where problems start.

To prevent problems you must take special care to keep these protected places clean.

It is better to clean your teeth carefully once every day than to clean poorly many times a day.

Use a soft brush to clean your teeth. Buy one from the store (be sure it says soft on the package), or make a brush yourself. To make a brush:

1. Use a small branch of young bamboo, strong grass, or the skin from sugar cane or betel nut. 2. Cut a piece that is
still green and soft.
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3. Chew one end to make it
stringy like a brush.
4. Sharpen the other end so it can clean between the teeth.
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You can twist the fiber from inside a coconut husk into a kind of brush. First rub it and shake away the loose bits. Then use the end to clean your teeth.

1: get a coconut from a tree. 2: split it open. 3: remove the husk.
4: remove the fiber from the husk with your hand. 5: twist the fiber into a brush. 6: clean your teeth with the brush.

Whatever kind of brush you use, be sure to clean your back teeth as well as your front teeth. Scrub the tops and sides where the grooves are. Then push the hairs between the teeth and scrub.

Toothpaste is not necessary.
Charcoal or even just water is enough.
When your teeth are clean, rinse away
the loose pieces of food.
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This page was updated:19 Feb 2018