Healthy Mouth Challenge

The Colgate Total Healthy Mouth Challenge has been designed in Adobe Flash. Please go to to download the free software to view this page. Alternatively the information below will provide advice to help keep your gums and mouth healthy.

If you are viewing this on a mobile phone, please visit the desktop version to see the full Healthy Mouth Challenge.

How often do you brush your teeth?

It is best to brush your teeth twice a day. Brushing less than this means you won’t remove the bacterial build-up on your teeth often enough to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

How often do you floss or use interdental brushes?

Dental bacteria thrive in hard to reach areas, especially between your teeth. It is important to clean between your teeth to prevent gum disease. 

Do you use mouthwash?

Mouthwash helps you reach the hard to reach areas in your mouth that are not easy to access with a toothbrush.

When did you last visit your dentist?

Your dentist is best placed to say how often you should have a checkup. Many of us may not need to go as regularly as every six months; others may need to visit more often

Remember – prevention is better than cure, and both tooth decay and gum disease are preventable. So it’s time for a checkup to get appropriate advice on how best to keep your mouth healthy.

Do your gums bleed when you brush or floss?

Bleeding gums are a sign of gum-inflammation due to bacterial build up next to the gum line. Gum disease identified early on, is completely reversible, so you should visit your dentist

If you regularly use floss and are not a smoker, this is a good sign of gum health. (Smoking masks bleeding in gums due to it.

Do any of your teeth feel loose?

There are two main reasons for loose teeth – trauma, or as a consequence of gum disease. It is important to visit your dentist so they can fully assess the situation and advise you appropriately. 

Are you pregnant?

During pregnancy, the hormone changes in your body exaggerate your immune response to bacteria, which can make your gums more prone to bleeding. Thorough brushing and interdental cleaning during pregnancy will reduce the risk of developing gum disease

How often do you snack on sugary foods?

The bacteria responsible for causing tooth decay thrive on our sugary diet and frequent snacking on sweets provides them with repeated opportunity to dissolve tooth enamel.

Has your smile changed over time?

If your smile has changed overtime, it could be a sign of changes in the health of your mouth.  If you notice differences, it is important that you discuss them with your dentist.

Your teeth are sometimes sensitive to cold food or drinks?

Tooth-sensitivity to cold is more common than you think. A discussion with your dentist will ensure nothing else is causing the symptoms, and they’ll be able to treat and advise you.

Does your breath need freshening during the day?

It is important to know why you may not have fresh breath.  Both untreated tooth decay and gum disease can impact your breath freshness. These conditions are caused by bacteria, so an effective daily oral hygiene routine is key.

Would you kiss your partner before brushing in the morning?

If it's fresh breath you are concerned about, why not discuss it with your dentist or hygienist? It’s a very personal issue, but dental professionals can help.

Thank you for taking the challenge!

3 out of 4 people may suffer from gum problems…  Don’t ignore the signs and start fighting back today with Colgate Total Pro-Gum Health.