Image Dental Blog


Monday, May 4, 2015

Exactly How Bad is it to Fall Asleep Without Brushing Your Teeth?

We all have done it – some more than others: falling sleep without brushing our teeth. However, the questions remains… is it really THAT bad? Let’s take a look.

The simple answer: bad, but ONE night won’t kill you!

The long answer: yes, it is bad and we’ll explain what happens over time so that it does not become a bad habit every night. Throughout the entire day you will probably have consumed at least 3 meals with snacks in between, on top of drinks to stay hydrated. Yea, so what?

Well, when we fall asleep without brushing, everything you consumed that day will have probably left a few particles stuck somewhere in between your teeth.

The particles are the bad part. What happens is that the bacteria in your mouth begin to have a party with these food particles. Unfortunately, this is a party that doesn’t end well.

Let us explain in more detail. Food particles give bacteria something to feed on. Bacteria are always hungry. When humans feed on something, energy that is not consumed is excreted as waste. This also applies for bacteria as well. However, the waste they excrete is the damaging component that breaks down tooth enamel due to its highly acidic concentration.

Saliva is Important Also
Another issue is that during nighttime, our saliva levels are not as high. Saliva is responsible for keeping the bacteria in our mouth in check. When these production levels are low in the night, it makes us more susceptible to decay.

Now that you understand in full detail how the decay process works, we hope you are motivated to keep brushing and flossing every single night (and day) – even if the dentist tells you your teeth are OK!

Image OC Dental's Tip: If we had to pick one over the other, then we would absolutely recommend brushing in the night as opposed to daytime. But ideally you should be brushing both times every day for at least 2 minutes per session. 

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