Are there tips on brushing my teeth with diabetes?

Hygiene Basics: The “Bass Method”

Brushing your teeth should be done systematically. Total time it should take is about 2 minutes.

Brush minimally 2 times a day, once after waking up and once before bed. If you split the mouth into 4 quadrants, then it should take approximately 30 seconds per quadrant. The proper position of the brush head is along the gum line, half on the gums and half on the teeth, pointing the bristles toward the gums at a 45 degree angle.

  • Use a gentle vibrating motion to move along, covering 3 to 4 teeth at a time.
  • Don’t forget to brush the back sides of teeth in the same manner, as these are often forgotten.
  • For the back of front teeth, hold the brush vertically for better access.
  • Finally brush the top surfaces of the teeth and the tongue.
  • Always use a soft toothbrush to avoid wearing away precious enamel.

This method focuses on the gum line and in between teeth, where most plaque forms. If done correctly it is a the most effective way to maintain the health of your gums, bone and teeth coupled with flossing, use of mouthwashes and regular dental checkups.

Don’t be worried if at the start of this regimen your gums experience some bleeding. It means you are on the way to obtaining a healthy mouth. After a week or so, you will notice less or no bleeding at all and will feel your gums.



If you need some tips on brushing your teeth with diabetes, consider the following:
  • Brush 2 to 3 times a day. You might brush after breakfast, after lunch and again before bedtime.
  • Avoiding brushing your teeth too much. This probably surprises you!
  • Use gentle strokes to brush your teeth. If you brush hard, your gums may pull away from the teeth. When the gums recede, you may need dental attention.
  • Brush all the teeth. Plaque is a biofilm that adheres to the teeth. You can't swish water in your mouth to rinse it out, but you can brush it off the teeth.
  • Brush at least 2 minutes each time. Any less than this is not enough time to get around all of the teeth to remove the plaque.
  • Stay in the habit. Once you get into the 3 times a day brushing habit, you will feel uncomfortable if you miss one of your daily brushings.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.