Does timing actually matter when it comes to brushing our teeth? Yes, it turns out the order in which we perform our morning rituals can impact the health of our teeth over the long haul. Other than getting rid of “morning breath”, there is an another reason to brush before breakfast. Many of the foods consumed during breakfast, such as oranges and grapefruits, are acidic and can weaken the tooth enamel. Brushing too soon after eating them can damage the enamel in its weakened state. Even though enamel is strong, brushing acid-softened enamel will wear it down over time.
The Mayo Clinic recommends that you should wait at least 30 minutes before brushing to avoid damaging the enamel in its weakened state. However, if you are pressed for time and don’t have 30 minutes to wait before brushing, drink a glass of water and/or rinse with water to wash away the acids. Also, consider foods that are less acidic and foods that are higher in calcium, which are better for, and gentler on, your teeth. This includes yogurts, cheeses, spinach and chia seeds, which are items that also happen to be braces-friendly. Other brushing tips:
- Always use a soft or extra soft-bristled toothbrush. This is important to avoiding tooth abrasion and gum recession.
- Brush with gentle pressure to use the tips of the bristles. This is to avoid tooth abrasion and gum recession.
- Brush twice a day (morning and evening). Set a timer for 2 minutes. Thoroughly removing plaque and debris from teeth takes time.
- Replace your toothbrush about every 3 months. The tips are not effective if the bristles are splayed.
Don’t forget to floss (https://www.theorthobee.com/how-to-clean-your-teeth-properly/)!
At the OrthoBee Orthodontics in Fountain Valley, we are committed to your healthy smile. We love sharing tips for good oral habits. Please share any tips you may have on keeping those pearly whites healthy.
Dr. Bui graduated with honors from the University of California, Irvine, where she received her bachelor’s degree in biology. After traveling to Spain on a Fulbright Scholarship, she continued her academic journey at the renowned Harvard School of Dental Medicine in Boston, where she graduated with top honors with a doctorate in dental medicine. She went on to complete her postgraduate residency at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and became board certified in orthodontics.
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