What Happens When You Skip Brushing Before Bed?

You’ve heard it all your life, “brush your teeth twice a day, when you wake up and when you go to bed.” Thinking about it might seem confusing though; wouldn’t it make more sense to brush after every meal instead, and how dirty can your mouth get while sleeping? Today we are going to answer these questions and talk about why we brush our teeth every night, and what happens to your teeth when you skip it.

What Happens When You Skip Brushing Before Bed?

A breeding ground for bacteria

Our mouth is moist, warm, and dark, a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Luckily most of the bacteria that are present in our mouth are either good for digestion or completely harmless to your health. Unfortunately there are some kinds of bacteria that can be detrimental and should be kept to a minimum whenever possible. That’s where brushing your teeth come into play!

When you sleep, all of the muscles in your body start to relax, and you stop producing as much saliva. Having a good amount of saliva is actually a very good sign of a healthy mouth because it helps to wash away excess bacteria and tartar that can form on your teeth. When the saliva flow slows down while you are sleeping, the bacteria have an easier go of multiplying on your teeth. That’s why your teeth feel fuzzy when you wake up! Brushing them right away once again removes the excess bacteria and tartar so that your day starts with a fresh and clean mouth. The bacteria that hurt your teeth are called:

Streptococcus mutans

This kind of bacteria feeds on sugars and starches that you eat and excretes an enamel eroding acid that causes tooth decay. You want to keep this kind of bacteria to a minimum level to restrict the amount of build-up that can occur. The best way to keep this bacteria at a lower level is to brush every 12 hours or so. Brushing never completely removes all traces of Streptococcus mutans, but it stops it from forming enough levels of acid that can damage the enamel of your teeth.

Bad breath and yellow teeth

If you allow too much time to pass before you brush, chances are there are particles of food left in your teeth that becomes a fast lane for germs to grow quickly. The end result is a stale mouth and even staler breath. These same foods will also stain your teeth and turn them yellow. The longer this is allowed to go on, the darker the stain gets, and the more noticeable it becomes.

The circle of brushing

You can see the pattern emerge: bacteria grows on your teeth and then you brush them away. Every 6 months a good and thorough cleaning by your dentist will make sure every nook and cranny is cleaned and can pinpoint certain areas you should focus on. You basically need to do this for the rest of your life! Fortunately, brushing is quite a simple and quick procedure that pays off huge dividends to a healthy and fresh smile.

Time for your 6-month check up? Contact your dentist in Bee Cave Dr. Rigby to schedule an appointment today!

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