Illustration by Paola Saliby

Is Brushing at Night More Important Than in the Morning?

Brushing twice per day is standard practice. But are the two brushing moments equally important? The answer, it turns out, is no.

By Tend

“If you had to choose, brushing at night is more important,” says Dr. Marc Schlenoff, Tend’s Head of Clinical Development.

At night, you’re brushing away “the accumulation of sugary and acidic things we all eat and drink throughout the day.” In the morning—unless you’re a midnight snacker (which, fair)—your teeth are still pretty clean, since they haven’t really been used. Brushing in the morning is more about freshening your breath and getting rid of any plaque you missed the night before.

That said, Dr. Schlenoff definitely does not recommend skipping your morning brush. Long-term it will affect your oral health, and short-term people may “stand a little further away from you.” But let’s say you’re a parent negotiating with a particularly brushing-averse kid: if you have to give up something at the bargaining table (just once), now you know what to do.

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