You likely know the basic rule of thumb when it comes to brushing: twice a day, once in the morning and once before bed. Getting into the habit of doing so will keep your teeth and your overall mouth healthy. But what if you want to brush more? Can you actually brush too much? There are some dangers to brushing too much.
What Can Over-Brushing Do?
Most people brush twice a day. Some brush three times—after breakfast, lunch, and before bed. That's okay. However, if you start brushing more than two or three times a day, you can start damaging your teeth. Too much brushing, especially if you have a toothbrush with hard bristles, can begin to actually damage the enamel on your teeth. When this occurs, it leaves your teeth without the protection the outer shell of enamel provides. Bacteria can then more quickly eat away at your teeth. Over-brushing can also hurt your gums, causing them to bleed and giving bacteria the chance to get into the tissue. Your gums may become infected and inflamed, and you may develop gum disease.
Brushing the Right Way is Better than Brushing Often
Brushing your teeth correctly is more effective than brushing the wrong way multiple times a day. You want to hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle and brush the entire surface of your teeth. Start at the gum line and brush upward to the crown. Move the toothbrush in small circles as you do so. You only need to brush for about two minutes. If you brush for longer than that, you run the risk of damaging your teeth. Also, be very careful that you're not brushing too hard. Be gentle—brushing shouldn't hurt or cause your gums to bleed. If your gums do bleed when you brush, you need to call us to set up an appointment so we can determine why.