Why Brush Teeth Twice a Day
Ideally, you should brush your teeth in the morning, after lunch, and before bed. However, most of us do well to brush twice a day and then not for the recommended two or three minutes. Two minutes is the minimum, but to maintain really clean teeth, you should think about brushing after every meal, evening snack, and before bed. If that’s not possible, chew sugarless gum after eating.
Keeping your teeth clean is important to preventing decay and gum disease. Plaque (the hard stuff that dentists have to scrape off your teeth) forms when bacteria and food particles accumulate in your mouth. If left untreated it can build up on the gums causing inflammation, bleeding gums, and gingivitis. To prevent the buildup of plaque, brushing often is critical.
Saliva contains proteins and minerals that protect tooth enamel and help prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Production of saliva occurs when you chew and is lowest at night when you sleep. If you skip brushing your teeth before bed, the bacteria from the food you ate all day will be active during the time when saliva is lowest. So, brush your teeth before bed for two-three minutes to make your teeth as bacteria free as possible.
Most people have a morning routine that includes brushing their teeth, dressing, then eating breakfast. If they don’t brush their teeth after breakfast or after lunch, mouth bacteria is active all day. And if they forget to brush before bed, that bacteria has a 24-hour run at your teeth.
To add additional protection to brushing your teeth at least twice a day, be sure to floss, chew sugarless gum, and use a mouthwash that doesn’t contain sugar.