Have you heard that you should wait for at least 30 minutes after eating before you brush your teeth? If you tend to brush immediately after your meals, this may come as a shock, but it is really in your best interest. Brushing too soon could actually damage your teeth.
Some Foods Are Tough on Teeth
Not all foods and drinks have the same effect on teeth. Sugars, carbohydrates, and acidic items can foster bacteria, which will ultimately lead to tooth decay. Soda, fruit juice, and coffee are some of the biggest culprits, and when they stay on the teeth for too long they can wear away at the enamel. While you might think this means that you should brush them off immediately, waiting is in your best interest.
Protect Your Teeth By Waiting
All of the harmful acids that encounter your teeth after eating weaken and soften the enamel. When you brush your teeth, the toothpaste doesn't immediately neutralize the acids, so the brushing action will actually spread them around. Since the enamel is already in a vulnerable state, scrubbing the teeth and pushing around acids can actually make the teeth more susceptible to decay.
A Better Option Just because you need to wait for a half an hour to brush doesn't mean there aren't things you can do to protect your teeth. Instead, rinse out your mouth with a glass of water to wash away acids. This also stimulates the saliva, which is a natural acid and bacteria fighting compound.
If your mouth feels dry, you may want to chew on some sugar-free gum that contains xylitol before you are able to brush. Are you concerned about your history of brushing after a meal and worry you might be suffering from enamel damage? If so, give our office a call today to set up an evaluation.
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