Many people wonder how frequently they need to brush their teeth—often to see how few times they can get away with without running into dental trouble. Along with the ADA, most dentists agree that brushing twice a day—once in the morning and again at night—is the frequency to aim for. Here’s why:

In the Morning: Brush in the morning before breakfast to cleanse your mouth of stinky overnight bacteria and to fight future enamel damage. You read that right. Your mouth will thank you if you brush before you eat or drink something instead of right after.

If you brush before you eat, you reduce bacteria that would be otherwise “feeding” on the sugars from your breakfast. If you brush your teeth right after eating or drinking, though, you run the risk of scrubbing off layers of your enamel—enamel that was made vulnerable by sugar-munching and acid-producing bacteria. If you like brushing your teeth after you eat, wait at least 30 minutes to ensure the safety of your tooth enamel.

At Night: Brush teeth before bed each night to go to sleep with clean teeth. When you sleep, your mouth gets drier, making it a more hospitable environment for bacteria to thrive and produce plaque and acid. Brushing your teeth before bed reduces the amount of bacteria your mouth will have to deal with overnight. If you neglect to brush before bed you will allow plaque built up from the day to mature, resulting in more acid production. Give your mouth the rest period it needs by doing your best to brush and floss each night.

Brushing twice a day might be a challenge for you if you were not taught to do so or have not yet established a routine, but it is a practice that is well worth it. For more tips on how to take care of your teeth at home, come in to A Beautiful Smile at Lake Pointe for your next exam & cleaning appointment. Along with an exceptional professional cleaning, lead dentist Dr. Jue can help you find ways to optimize at-home oral care. Contact us today.