Smile: Women Have Better Dental Habits
May 14, 2004 -- Brush up on your oral
hygiene, guys. A new survey shows that women take better care of their teeth
than men. They brush teeth more frequently. They even have a
The nationwide survey, from the American
Dental Association, is based on telephone interviews with 1,014 adults
conducted in December 2003.
25% of those surveyed brush their teeth after every
meal, reflecting a steady increase. In 2001, that number was 15%; in 2000, it
was 18%; and in 1997, it was 12%.
One in five -- 19% -- brush their teeth
once a day (almost the same percentage as previous years).
53% brush their teeth twice a day -- a
drop. In 2001, it was 60%, in 2000, it was 63%, and in 1996, it was
Women were more likely than men to brush
teeth after every meal: 29% of women vs. 21% of men.
Men were more likely to brush just once a
day: 25% of men vs. 13% of women.
Women were more likely to have a dentist
than men: 89% of women vs. 75% of men.
As for daily dental floss use, 51% use it,
up slightly from 48% in 1997.
Dentists advocate a daily routine: Brush teeth twice a day and
floss once (to remove trapped food particles and plaque). Also, get regular
dental checkups and tooth cleanings to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.