Importance of Nightly Brushing

Importance of Nightly Brushing
Posted on 09/08/2015

Why Brushing At Night Is So Important

At Heller Orthodontics, we strongly encourage our patients to maintain a strong oral hygiene program at home, but we also realize you are human. While you surely have the best of intentions, we understand that sometimes things just fall through - and that's normal. Everyone has a slip-up every now and then, and occasionally forgetting your nighttime brushing routine won’t do much harm. But making a habit of it can have some dangerous consequences.

The Importance of Nighttime Brushing

The problem is that as we sleep, our metabolism and saliva production slow considerably. This means your mouth can't clean itself as effectively as it does during the day, and it creates an environment ideal for bacteria to grow and multiply - especially if they've got sugary food specks to nurse on. These bacteria then produce acids that eat away at the enamel of your teeth, eventually leading to tooth decay, cavities, gingivitis, and even worse, periodontal disease.

Maximizing Your Nightly Routine

Thankfully, harmful effects are easy to avoid. Here are five simple steps to make your nightly oral hygiene routine as effective as possible:

1. Brush & Floss Before Your Sleep: Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush gently for two full minutes, making sure to get every surface of the teeth.

2. Don't Forget the Rest: It's not just teeth you need to brush - be sure to get your tongue and the roof of your mouth, as well.

3. Floss: This is absolutely vital. Without flossing, you're leaving upwards of 30% of the tooth surface unclean and at risk for cavities!

4. Rinse: We recommend our patients rinse with Phos Flur fluoride each night to help keep your teeth strong.

5. Stay Strong: After you've brushed, no more eating for the night! Even just one more cookie will ruin all your hard work, and you'll need to go through the routine again.

Contact Heller Orthodontics!

Have more questions about brushing or your dental health in general? We're happy to help you out! Feel free to reach out to us at our contact page or schedule an appointment at our Bethesda or Laurel, MD office. We can't wait to hear from you, and don't forget to check back to this blog occasionally for updates on all things related to orthodontics and dental health!