When you brush your teeth you are not only cleaning your teeth and removing plaque, but you are also protecting your teeth from cavity-causing bacteria. Most toothpaste contains fluoride. Fluoride is a mineral that protects your teeth. It occurs naturally in the environment and it makes the outer surface of your teeth, what is known as enamel, more resistant to acid attacks.
So you think since you don’t care much for acidic foods and drinks you are safe. That is where you are wrong.
The food particles and their components break down and turn to acid, which, in turn, attacks the enamel of your teeth. It then does what acid does, it eats away at the enamel and creates an entryway for cavity-causing bacteria.
How Does Fluoride Work on Your Teeth?
When you brush your teeth, the water on your toothbrush mixes with the toothpaste and makes toothpaste suds. When you are finished brushing, you spit out the suds. The residue of the fluoride in the toothpaste sits on your teeth and does its job of protecting your teeth. The question then is, do you rinse your mouth immediately after you brush or do you wait? And when you rinse, do you use water or mouthwash? What difference does it make, you ask?
The fact is it makes a big difference. When you rinse your mouth with water you dilute the fluoride and wash it away from your teeth. This diminishes the effect of the fluoride. You wash it off your teeth and completely lose the benefit. Dentists recommend that you wait a little while before you rinse your mouth.
If you must rinse your mouth soon after you brush, you should rinse with mouthwash. When you rinse with mouthwash be sure you use mouthwash that contains fluoride. This way the fluoride from he mouthwash can do the job of the fluoride from the toothpaste that was washed away.
Please contact our office if you have any questions about fluoride.