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Is Rinsing with Water After Brushing a Helpful Option?

Posted on 3/25/2020 by Dr. Michael Wockenfus
Is Rinsing with Water After Brushing a Helpful Option?Many of us have a follow a strict dental care routine. However, part of your dental care routine may be harming your teeth. While some habits are good, others can make it so that we don't get the most out of the products we use. One habit that many people are guilty of is rinsing their mouth after brushing.

It makes sense to rinse your mouth after brushing. Who wants nasty toothpaste sitting in their mouth all night or until lunch time, right? However, rinsing your mouth actually causes more harm than good. After you brush your teeth, you should avoid rinsing your mouth. Rinsing your mouth washes away the toothpaste. At this point, you may be saying, “I know that's the point!” However, toothpaste is more effective when it sits in your mouth.

Why Toothpaste Shouldn't Be Rinsed

When you rinse your mouth after brushing, you're literally sending money down the drain. The components in toothpaste need time to react with our teeth to be effective. Most good toothpastes contain fluoride. Fluoride is a chemical that strengthens our enamel and helps it defend against bacteria. Fluoride is effective at strengthening teeth, but only when it has time to react with them. For most toothpastes with fluoride, you should avoid rinsing your mouth for 30 minutes. This will give fluoride time to bond to your enamel and make it stronger.

If you use mouthwash, it's important to not rinse it our either. Mouthwash abides by the same principle as toothpaste. Give it 30 minutes before eating or drinking anything. Otherwise, you could be swallowing a ton of fluoride. While not harmful in small doses, it can cause an upset stomach. If you're interested in learning more about dental tips, contact our office. We're more than happy to help you with your dental care routine.

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Michael J. Wockenfus, DDS created a blog to educate the community. It is your resource for all dentistry questions. Learn and read topics in the blog here!
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