The Best Times of Day to Brush Your Teeth

When you want to stay on top of your dental hygiene routine, it’s not a question of how many times per day you should brush your teeth. (However, a good rule of thumb is at least twice, according to the American Dental Association. We agree with them.) The most important question is the best times of day to brush your teeth. 

Brushing your teeth ensures that sugar, food, and other debris isn’t sitting on your teeth collecting bacteria. Going too long without brushing can cause cavities - and, even if you’ve brushed your teeth every single night for years, you can still get cavities simply by going all day without brushing if you’re drinking sugary drinks or eating food that’s high in sugar or carbohydrates (as these are the top two culprits of cavities). Cavities can be avoided by sticking to a strict teeth brushing schedule. 

Best Times of Day to Brush

In short, the best times of day to brush your teeth are in the morning and in the evening. Some wonder if after eating breakfast is the best time to brush their teeth, but it’s actually best to brush your teeth right when you wake up in the morning. 

This is because bacteria can build up on your teeth overnight while you’re sleeping. That’s right - even when you’ve brushed your teeth right before bed, bacteria can (and does) still build up. This is due to the fact that our mouths produce less saliva than usual while we’re sleeping, and saliva is actually what washes away the majority of bacteria during the day. 

At night, brushing just before bed is great. Make sure that you avoid any food or beverages after brushing, with the exemption of water. Anything that you eat or drink before bed will stick to your teeth, and because your saliva isn’t being produced as readily, it will be significantly easier for bacteria to grow and spread. 

What Does Brushing Entail?

We like to remind our patients that brushing should not just include a toothpaste and a toothbrush (although, this is a great start). Ideally, the brushing process should also include flossing and rinsing with fluoride. 

These are measures that ensure that no food debris or bacteria is left unswept. Flossing can get those pesky pieces of food out from in between your teeth, and fluoride is actually what helps your teeth to build the proper enamel to protect your teeth from cavities. Think of rinsing with fluoride as providing your teeth with a shield. This can actually protect your teeth from the bacteria overgrowth that happens at night, and can rehabilitate your teeth if there has been excessive bacteria overgrowth, since bacteria can wear away at the enamel and strength of your teeth.

As long as you do your full brushing routine right when you wake up and just before bed, your dental hygiene will be in tip top shape. However, we always recommend coming in every six months for a proper dental cleaning

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