You've probably heard this several times that brushing your teeth two times (morning & night) daily is essential. After a while, you might take this sound advice for granted. Here's a 'brush up' on what happens when you don't brush your teeth at night, and why committing to good oral care benefits your health — and your wallet.
What happens if you don’t brush your teeth at night?
If you need a refresher, you're not alone. Unfortunately, many people continue to fall short when it comes to proper oral care. When it comes to adults, the National Oral Health Programme of the IDA notes that nearly 85-90% of adults have dental cavities. While cavities can occur despite your best efforts, one of the best ways to prevent and get rid of dental plaque, the bacteria that causes cavities, is to thoroughly brush at least twice a day, morning and night.
This Is What Happens When You Don't Brush Your Teeth
According to the Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Pathology, the oral cavity has the second largest and diverse microbiota after the gut harbouring over 700 species of bacteria. It nurtures numerous microorganisms which include bacteria, fungi, viruses and protozoa. The mouth with its various niches is an exceptionally complex habitat where microbes colonize the hard surfaces of the teeth and the soft tissues of the oral mucosa. When you don't brush at night, especially if you have had something sweet, these bacteria get to work ingesting food particles and sugary debris that ultimately cause tooth decay.
If you fall short of brushing one night, the consequences aren't necessarily severe (though you should aim to get back on track by flossing and brushing right away). But if you've missed brushing at night more frequently, you can increase your risk of cavities.
Brushing twice can reduce the risk of cavities by as much as 50% and hence it definitely helps if you do the same regularly. Some people have a higher risk of developing cavities. It's a good idea to talk to your dentist about your family oral health history and get a complete exam. Those who have an autoimmune disease may have an increased chance of developing gum disease and tooth decay. Maintaining a good oral health routine is especially critical for those who are more susceptible to cavities.
You can control the bacteria build-up in your mouth by brushing twice a day and flossing once daily. This simple, two-minute habit goes a long way, and is one of the easiest investments you can make in your health. Up your brushing game by establishing some simple new habits.
Consistent care can lead to less time in the dentist's office and reduce the strain on your wallet from extensive dental work. Brush better and more frequently and you'll have a healthier smile.
This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.