How Soon After Eating Should I Brush My Teeth?

Posted: September 8, 2022
Woman brushing her teeth

It’s good to brush your teeth after every meal. Brushing your teeth after every meal and snack is better. But, should you brush your teeth right after eating? And if not, just how long should you wait?

Immediately after eating, tooth enamel may be softened. Brushing your teeth right away can cause enamel loss, resulting in tooth discoloration, increased sensitivity, and increased risk for decay and infection. On the other hand, waiting too long can result in the development of plaque and tartar, increase the chances of tooth decay, cause unpleasant breath, and increase the risk of tooth loss.

When to Brush Your Teeth

It’s best to wait for 30-minutes after eating before you brush your teeth. Be sure to avoid food and drink for 30-minutes after brushing your teeth as well, to allow the fluoride in the toothpaste time to work.

When brushing, use a soft-bristled toothbrush to help prevent damage to the enamel, and if you have restorations, avoid abrasive toothpaste with ingredients like baking soda. Abrasive toothpaste may help to polish natural enamel but can scratch or damage veneers and crowns.

In addition to brushing, it’s important to floss at least once daily. Floss before you brush to help remove the most significant amount of plaque and food particulate.

Protecting Your Teeth

Several general dental services, such as routine cleanings, fluoride treatments, and sealants, can help prevent damage to the teeth. If damage has already occurred, root canal and gum disease treatment can restore comfort and prevent tooth loss. Cosmetic services like dental veneers, crowns, and teeth whitening, can improve the appearance of teeth that have been impacted by oral health issues, while dental implants can replace teeth that have been lost or extracted following trauma, advanced gum disease, and more.

At The Smile Centre, we a dedicated to helping each patient achieve the strong, healthy, and attractive smile they deserve. If it has been longer than six months since your last visit or if you have cosmetic or restorative concerns, please call us at 941-351-4468 to schedule an appointment.