TIME Health Care

Even Dentists Disagree On How To Brush Your Teeth

Young boy brushing teeth, Italy
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A study describes the different views as 'unacceptably inconsistent'

What’s the right way to brush your teeth? New research suggests that the experts don’t really know.

The study, published in the British Dental Journal, said that teeth-brushing advice provided to consumers is “unacceptably inconsistent” in its description of how often to brush and for how long.

“The wide range of recommendations we found is likely due to the lack of strong evidence suggesting that one method is conclusively better than another,” said lead author John Wainwright in a University College London press release.

The discrepancy is problematic, Wainwright said, because it leads to distrust in dentists and their profession.

“For something most people do twice a day, you would expect dentists to send a clearer, more unified message to their patients on how to brush their teeth,” said Wainwright, who now works as a dentist.

Hopefully the dental community doesn’t brush off his advice.

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