We’ve all been there: going to bed way later than we should, exhausted, and wanting to fall into bed without washing our face, changing clothes, or brushing our teeth. If you’re going to brush your teeth in the morning anyway, it can’t really be all that bad to skip brushing at night, can it?
“Going to bed without brushing your teeth is like going to bed with poop in your mouth,” says Dr. Mark Burhenne. It’s not a pleasant mental image, but think of it this way – every time you have a meal, the bacteria that naturally exists in your mouth feeds on the food stuck between your teeth. And like everything else, this bacterium creates waste. This waste is very acidic and can break down tooth enamel causing cavities.
If you go to bed without brushing away that bacterial waste, it starts to harden and form plaque on your teeth. Hardened plaque requires a visit to a dentist to remove the buildup. But on top of a dentist appointment, plaque is attacked by your immune system since your gums see plaque as in infection. Over time, this means that healthy gum tissues are damage and start to pull away from the tooth.
Now, of course all of this doesn’t happen from just missing one night of brushing. But over time, that bad habit can cause a lot more harm than awful morning breath. The extra two minutes it would take to brush your teeth before collapsing into bed is worth it!
If you’ve fallen into a bad habit and have noticed plaque starting to build up, it’s not too late to make a change. Start by making an appointment at Dakota Dental to get rid of that plaque. The family dentists at Dakota Dental can help patients get a clean start on their oral health to help them avoid future cavity filings and gum irritation.