The Real Reason You Shouldn't Brush Your Teeth Right After Breakfast

For "a healthy mouth and smile," the American Dental Association recommends brushing your teeth for two minutes twice each day. However, the organization does not specify the best time, or times, to brush. You may think that brushing your teeth after breakfast is an ideal time to get the job done. After all, you are removing the bacteria that forms in your mouth overnight, of which there are some 700 types, according to the News in Health. When you brush right after breakfast, you are cleaning away any residue you've just put in your mouth. Brushing right after breakfast makes your mouth feel fresh. Maybe it even helps you start your day on the right foot.

Nevertheless, brushing your teeth after your morning meal may not actually be the best practice. In fact, emerging evidence suggests brushing those pearly whites it could actually be causing your teeth some serious damage.

It has to do with your tooth enamel

The reason why you should not brush your teeth right after breakfast has to do with the enamel of your teeth. "The precious enamel that coats the teeth is temporarily weakened after eating due to the acids present in food, so by brushing right after you eat, you risk damaging it," dentist Richard Marques told the New York Post. Your tooth enamel is permanent, and any damage done to it lasts forever, so it is essential to take care of it, according to WebMD.

Many experts recommend brushing your teeth before breakfast instead of directly after because it is better for your tooth enamel, according to Healthline. It removes any bacteria that formed in your mouth overnight, and it also triggers your saliva production, which helps kill bacteria and break down food. However, if you simply cannot break the habit of brushing after breakfast — or any other meal — you should wait 30 to 60 minutes before putting those bristles against your teeth.