Try "dry brushing."

Most people think it’s only worth brushing if you have water and toothpaste, but the fact is that brushing with a dry toothbrush can provide healthy gum stimulation. You still need to brush properly at least twice a day, but try dry brushing in between.

It’s OK to chew gum.

Chewing gum isn’t bad for you as long as you choose sugarless gum. Xylitol is a sugar substitute that actually helps prevent tooth decay. Don’t chew for more than 10 minutes at a time, though, or you may overwork your jaw muscles and joints.

If you don’t like to floss…

Flossing is important… essential even. But if you just can’t do it, you can use soft, dental toothpicks instead. They loosen food between teeth and stimulate the gums as well as flossing.

Don’t be a sipper…

If you must drink soda or juice, sipping on it all day is much worse for your teeth than drinking it all at once. The constant presence of sugary liquid accelerates tooth decay.

Root canals don’t hurt.

Really. Specialists practicing with today’s techniques can perform root canals in under and hour, and usually with a minimum of discomfort. It’s not as scary as it used to be.

Don’t chew ice.

We’ve all seen people crunching away on ice cubes, but you can really hurt your jaw or even break a tooth. Don’t take the chance.

Time’s up…

Look for electric toothbrushes that come with a two minute timer. It makes brushing for the full, recommended time as easy as waiting for the beep.

We’re all sensitive people…

However, if you’re an adult with sensitivity that makes brushing uncomfortable, just dip your brush in fluoride rinse and brush without toothpaste. This can often alleviate discomfort.