One of the most common oral health questions dentists receive from patients is the proper order of brushing and flossing. We are here to assure you that there is no recommended order to a standard oral health regimen. As long as you are brushing twice a day for two minutes with fluoride toothpaste and flossing daily, you are experiencing all the benefits of basic home oral hygiene. Dentists typically recommend brushing once in the morning and (definitely) once right before going to sleep/after your last meal. Flossing can take place at any point throughout the day, so long as it happens before you go to sleep.
Beyond these suggestions, you may want to consider these options as well:
-Brush in the morning before breakfast. Brushing right after a meal can actually damage dental enamel due to the acidic affects of digested carbohydrates and the abrasive nature of toothpastes.
-Using an alcohol rinse like Listerine after brushing can limit the fluoride activity of toothpaste. If you are at a high risk for developing cavities, consider switching to a fluoride rinse like ACT.
-Chronic non-flosser? Consider keeping a bag of handle flossers in your car. It's a great reminder to keep those teeth clean!
-While sugar-free chewing gum can help clean/protect teeth, it is no replacement for brushing and flossing. However, a sick of gum after lunch or dinner can help dislodge food and stimulate protective salivary flow.
We hope you found this guide helpful! If you have any other questions on oral hygiene, flossing, brushing or toothpaste choices, please give our office a call.