Why You Want to Brush Your Teeth Before Falling Asleep

Have you often missed brushing your pearly whites before hopping into bed? Maybe when it's been a long day and you are completely exhausted and you are literally asleep when your head hits the pillow? You might think to yourself that you will brush as soon as you get up in the morning. As your best dentist in Lakeview, we can tell you that it is definitely a good idea to drag yourself out of bed and give those teeth a good brushing.

So let's ask the question: Is it really that disgusting on our teeth to forget to brush before falling asleep every so often?

You may not like the answer: Yes, it's pretty gross.

It's pretty well known that the ADA (American Dental Association) advises us to brush two times a day minimum. It's also pretty well known that not brushing can scare off the loyalist of friends. However, teeth-brushing has far more value than simply having fresher breath. Missing just one session of brushing can stimulate bacteria growth and build up, called plaque, which may then convert to gum disease and cavities.

Try this: during your work day, slide your tongue over your teeth over the gum line. Do you feel something fuzzy or sticky? That is plaque.

Brushing your teeth breaks up that bacteria so it can't stay in place and continue to grow. If bacteria is left there, it will attack your teeth. The longer it is allowed to grow in your mouth, the more likely it will become that rough, hard, yellow material called tartar. This can cause bleeding in your gums and inflammation and if untreated, eventually tooth loss.

This process can all begin with one night of not brushing before bed. It only takes one time for that bacteria to have the chance to grow and do some damage. If you get forgetful to brush at night more frequently than you care to admit (shhhh... we won't tell), that risk increases quite a bit.

You may think that chewing on some gum or mints, or even having a good mouthwash will help. And those things can help your mouth feel clean and fresh. However, they cannot replace brushing.

Flossing and brushing your teeth are the ONLY ways to really effectively remove plaque from your teeth.

So if you have recommitted yourself to not missing a night of brushing your teeth, recommit to doing a thorough job, since doing a mediocre job can be almost as bad as not brushing at all.

Using a soft bristled toothbrush, brush for at least two minutes covering all the surface of your teeth. Then take the time to floss at least one time per day and come in to your South loop or Lakeview dentist office for regular cleanings. We can help get rid of tartar if you have that build up.

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