Falling Asleep Without Brushing the Teeth
It can be easy to forget to brush your teeth at night. Maybe you had a late social event, or maybe you just crashed after a long night of study. Unfortunately, going to bed without brushing your teeth can be one of the worst things to do to your smile.
Your mouth is full of oral bacteria. These germs live in a biofilm called plaque. Plaque is the sticky stuff that gets all over your teeth and makes your mouth feel fuzzy. It also irritates your gums. When you brush your teeth, you scrub away the plaque as well as the bacteria that live in it. If you fail to brush it, it can start to mineralize into a hard substance called tartar. Tartar is most noticeable near the gums or between your teeth, and only a dental professional can remove it.
Brushing your teeth before bed is even more important than brushing at other times. It removes that bacterial film and helps your teeth stay cleaner while you sleep. Your mouth can become dry at night, particularly if you snore, and this can allow even more bacteria to grow and attack the gums and enamel. Even not brushing just once can lead to gum inflammation, and over time, your gums can become infected, tooth decay can start and you may ultimately lose teeth.
Next time you have a late night, take a few extra minutes to brush your teeth. Use a soft-bristled brush and your favorite fluoride toothpaste to brush for about two minutes at a time. Floss when you are done, and then go to bed. You will only add five minutes to your routine, but those five minutes may make the difference between a healthy smile and a toothless grin. Call us today to learn more or to schedule an appointment with our Northridge dentist.
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