We all know that cleaning our teeth is good for our oral health. Brushing and flossing have not
only been proven to fight cavities, but gum disease as well. More research is showing a link
between oral health and total wellness, prompting people to take their oral health more
seriously as heart disease, cancer, and other illnesses have been linked to poor oral hygiene.
Cleaning your teeth is great, but can you actually clean them too much? Here’s how you could
actually be damaging your smile through too much cleaning!
It doesn’t take much effort to remove plaque. This substance can easily be brushed off, making
hard or aggressive brushing not only unnecessarily, but damaging to teeth. If you use a medium
or hard-bristled toothbrush and exert force when brushing, you might just be damaging your
Aggressive brushing can wear away tooth enamel over time. It can even lead to receding gums,
which can create painful tooth sensitivity, especially when combined with enamel loss. Due to
this, cavities and gum disease may result. It’s not necessary to brush your teeth hard, so choose
a soft-bristled toothbrush and gently brush away the plaque!
Flossing Your Teeth Too Much
Flossing once per day is enough unless you have something that’s stuck in your teeth. You can
actually damage gum tissue by flossing too much or flossing too aggressively. When you floss
quickly or harshly, gums may bleed or become tender. Flossing too much can actually disrupt
the gumline, which can lead to receding gums and tooth sensitivity.
You only need to floss once each day. Remember that the quality, not the quantity, of your
flossing is important. Make sure you use enough floss to have a clean section between each set
of teeth. Floss gently, and take your time. The goal is to remove plaque and food particles that
could cause cavities, so apply gentle pressure and don’t hurt your gum tissue!
Frequent Daily Use of Mouthwash
Mouthwash is certainly beneficial for your oral health, but only when used appropriately. Since
many mouthwashes contain alcohol, this substance can be harsh on the tissues of the mouth if
overused. In fact, using mouthwash three times or more per day has been associated with an
increased risk of oral cancer.
You only need to use mouthwash one to two times per day in conjunction with your regular
oral care habits. It’s important to remember that mouthwash is by no means a replacement for
brushing and flossing, but rather a supplement. Your dentist can advise you more on when and
if you need to use mouthwash based on your unique smile!
So there you have it—while cleaning your teeth is absolutely beneficial for your oral health,
there are downsides to cleaning your teeth too much. These include stripping away enamel
from harsh brushing, irritating the gum tissue from flossing too much, and increasing your risk
for oral disease by using mouthwash too many times per day. Stay healthy and keep your teeth