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Is Brushing Teeth After Eating Good For You?

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Certain foods and drinks - especially those high in carbohydrates and sugars - spur the creation of certain bacteria in your mouth that attack your tooth enamel for at least twenty minutes after you eat a meal or have a snack. By brushing right after you eat, you will get rid of bacteria before they attack your tooth enamel.

For the best results, you should use a fluoride toothpaste. Two in one: removes plaque and prevents tooth decay to ensure that your teeth stay squeaky clean after you eat.

You should know, however, that brushing your teeth after eating can sometimes affect your tooth enamel. According to the Ontario Dental Hygienists' Association, you should wait at least an hour before brushing your teeth after consuming acidic food or beverages. Foods containing citric acid, like oranges, grapefruits and lemons, weakens tooth enamel. Brushing too soon after eating them can damage the enamel in its weakened state.

That said, it's a good idea to brush your teeth before eating an acidic food and to drink a glass of water when you are finished to wash away the acids. As an alternative to waiting to brush your teeth, try eating nutritious foods that are low in carbohydrates and sugar after eating something acidic. This will help reduce the harmful acids that such foods can create.

In addition, exposure to acids found in drinks like wines, juices and soft drinks can erode enamel. Acid erosion causes permanent damage to your teeth. To keep acid erosion to a minimum, limit snacking between meals and be mindful of consumption of soft drinks and sugary snack foods.