Do you feel that the best time to brush your teeth is right after you eat? If so, you're not alone, as the logic is pretty simple – get the food off of your teeth right away, and it won't have time to harm them.
Unfortunately, brushing immediately after a meal can actually damage your teeth, so you are better off waiting a bit before you brush.
Brushing Too Soon Can Damage Your Teeth
When you eat, your oral cavity is suddenly full of sugars and acids that weaken the enamel of the teeth. The enamel is pretty hard – the hardest substance in the entire body, in fact – but it isn't invincible. During a meal, acid levels get high and cause the enamel to weaken a bit, making it vulnerable to the abrasive nature of your brushing.
Brushing right after you eat during this weakened state of the enamel means that you are attacking your own teeth with your toothbrush. Even soft-bristled brushes are abrasive and can cause damage. Unfortunately, the enamel doesn't regenerate, so once it is gone, it is gone for good.
Wait an Hour Before You Brush
Fortunately, your body has a natural way to fight high acid levels in your mouth. With time, the pH value will stabilize and then return to normal. This is all thanks to the saliva, which rinses away harmful bacteria and acids so that the oral environment can return to normal.
In the future, try and wait at least an hour after eating before you brush. This way, your mouth has time to readjust the pH level. You won't harm your teeth when you brush, and you'll still rid your teeth of any harmful food particles or bacteria.
Do you have more questions about your brushing strategy? If so, give us a call today. We are happy to help.