The first thing most of us do after waking up brushes our teeth. But did you know that it’s not wrong to have breakfast before brushing your teeth in the morning? However, it all depends on what you eat in the morning. Sounds confusing? Let’s discuss it in detail.
It may sound weird or gross when we tell you to brush after breaking your fast in the morning. But at times, that might be a healthier option. But here’s the catch! It depends on the type of food you are eating in your morning meal. For example, brushing your teeth afterward would be wiser to prevent a bacterial attack if your breakfast comprises a lot of carbs or sugar.
Let’s quickly look at what happens to your oral health while deep asleep.
What Happens to Your Mouth at Night?
The recommended average sleep time for a healthy adult is 8 hours. During this time, many things are going on in your mouth! Depending on your frequency of brushing and flossing habits throughout the day, especially before going to bed, your teeth may carry between 1K and 100K bacteria.
These bacteria are busy eating up all your sources of nourishment from the corners of your mouth and teeth, robbing you of all your dental nutrients! In short, these unseen, little culprits can start nibbling on each tiny piece of food particle between your teeth and gums.
Now, what we will tell you may sound gross, but you need to know this! Like all living beings, these bacteria also excrete, and these remains are highly acidic. The acids accumulated from these excretions may damage your tooth enamel and increase the risks of tooth decay and periodontal disease (or gum disease). This also explains the bad breath most of us have after waking up!
Sadly, you cannot completely wipe out bacteria from your mouth. What you can take charge of, however, is controlling the bacterial population and reducing the risks of dental diseases and infections. That’s why any family dentist Garland team would advise you to brush and floss before going to bed and after waking up. This is to reduce the damage bacteria cause overnight.
The Right Time to Brush Your Teeth in the Morning
So, should you brush your teeth before or after breakfast? Naturally, we are keen on accomplishing our early morning oral hygiene routines every day after getting up. As a universally accepted rule, we brush twice daily – once in the morning and before bed. However, only some of us know when to brush our teeth – is it before a meal or after?
According to dentists, the proper tooth brushing time in the morning is before having breakfast. That’s because of the harmful bacterial activities we explained above. So you need to remove the plaque formation and get a fresh morning breath before grabbing any meal. The simple formula to minimize bacterial accumulation is removing plaque every 12 hours.
Besides, brushing, glossing, and tongue-cleaning before your first-morning meal also helps to coat your teeth with a protective film to fight against the harmful attacks of acidic foods and drinks. So, if you are eating without brushing or flossing, you are consuming all the plaque that will form on your teeth and gums. It also weakens your enamel over time, thus causing enamel demineralization, which may further cause tooth decay.
Why Should You Brush After Breakfast?
There is one exception to this pre-breakfast brushing rule: when your breakfast contains sugary foods like surgery cereals, doughnuts, sugary pancakes, etc. If you don’t brush immediately after the intake of high-sugared foods, you are letting your enamel be subject to decay and damage through plaque formation. So, rather than letting sugar sit on your teeth and gums, brush your teeth to through away and prevent cavities.
Coming to the list of drinks containing high sugar levels includes sugared beverages like tea, coffee, and so on. In the list of solids, there are sweet cereals, pancakes or waffles, cookies, muffins, butter toast, breakfast pastries and bars, sugary, low-fat yogurts, etc. Try to avoid these items to reduce the sugar-coating of your teeth. Avoid sugar as much as possible, especially in the early hours of the day!
Why Should You Not Brush After Breakfast?
Unlike the above instance of definitely brushing after eating sugary foods, you should avoid brushing your teeth immediately after having acidic foods, including fruit juices like apple juice, orange juice, etc. These are acidic, so you should avoid brushing your teeth after consuming them.
If you have to get rid of your mouth odor before going to work or business meetings, you can wait for at least 30–45 minutes before brushing your teeth. Otherwise, the acid may damage your enamel. So instead, let saliva remineralize the lost minerals and deposit them back into your enamel during those 30–45 minutes.
Therefore, brushing too soon is not preferable as it may damage your enamel by weakening it temporarily through demineralization (yes, acidic foods take away the minerals from it!). The best solution would be to rinse your mouth with water to remove the tea or coffee breath and wash away the acids. In short, try to avoid over-brushing at all costs!
So, apart from brushing and flossing twice daily, you must also understand the logic behind brushing your teeth before or after breakfast. Now that you know the factors determining whether to brush before or after your morning meal make sure to take care of your oral health accordingly. A proper brushing routine can prevent numerous dental infections and periodontal diseases.
Looking for personalized solutions and advice from a reputed Garland dentistry clinic in town would also help. You can ask for customized guidance regarding good oral habits per your specific diet chart and eating habits. The last thing you would want is tooth decay or other dental infections due to negligence or bad brushing habits, which you can prevent easily!