Should you brush before or after breakfast?

Should you brush your teeth before or after breakfast? We talked to a dentist to find a definitive answer — plus what you should be eating to keep your whole mouth healthy.

It’s perhaps the most important philosophical debate of our time: Should you brush your teeth before or after breakfast? Okay, not really. But, it turns out the chronological order of your brush sesh and morning meal can drastically impact the health of your teeth and overall wellness, just as much as what breakfast you eat can dictate which side of the mouth-bed your teeth wake up on (and no, skipping breakfast is not a sustainable shortcut!). Fortunately, our quip dental-team-dynamos teamed up with the breakfast superfood-superstars over at Daily Harvest to help guide you through the ultimate health ~optimized~ morning routine.

Why does timing even matter?

The outer shell of your teeth is made up of enamel, which is basically the Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson of your anatomy: It’s the hardest substance in your body. But, enamel is to acid as the Powerpuff Girls are to HIM (if you’re not familiar, HIM is the Powerpuff Girls arch nemesis)... and many breakfast basics have a high concentration of acid.

According to Dr. Mitali Hariawala, Dental Community Manager at quip, brushing your teeth straight after eating is essentially like scrubbing a cleaning detergent on your enamel. Although your enamel is incredibly strong, brushing acid-softened-enamel will wear it down, resulting in tooth decay and discolored teeth (as the yellow layer directly below your enamel, called Dentin, gets exposed).

What effect does the food you eat have?

Some foods are good for your taste buds, some foods are good for your mouth… but it is possible to get you a breakfast that can do both.

Foods that are high in calcium are better for, and more gentle on, your teeth, including yogurts, cheeses, and chia seeds. If you’re looking to give the health of your gums a lil boost, vitamin A and C will treat them right. High-values of these vitamins can be found in plenty of fruits and vegetables, although many fruits are highly acidic and so should be accompanied by drinking water, or diluted in non-acidic foods like yogurt.

So fruit / vegetable and Yogurt smoothies turn out to be one of the best ways to achieve the perfect healthy body >< healthy teeth balance which is why we teamed up with Daily Harvest (who’s Carrot + Chia Glow smoothie is a personal fave of mine) to bring you this AM upgrade.

Isn't skipping brushing / breakfast easier!?

Brushing your teeth and eating breakfast are dawn-non-negotiables, just like watching 30 minutes of Instagram Stories before finally getting out of bed.

Brushing your teeth in the morning is important because it resets your mouth ready for the foods of the day and removes the bacteria that grows in your mouth overnight. This bacteria causes morning breath and turns sugar into acid (that’s why sugar is bad for your teeth). Brushing in the morning makes sure your teeth wake up on the right side of clean, ensuring long-lasting health (so long as you’re also brushing at night of course - something we tried to make less of a chore with the super silent and sensitive vibrations of quip) for a long, healthy life.

And skipping breakfast? Also not a healthy option. According to Jessica Young, Head of Product at Daily Harvest, your first bites of the day have a big impact on your metabolism for the rest of your day, but a healthy breakfast doesn’t need to take an age to prepare,

“Smoothies and breakfast bowls, like those we make at Daily harvest, are ideal for the morning not only because they are light, filled with nutrients and gentle on teeth, but because they take no time at all to prep.”

So, before or after - What's the answer?

In short, you should definitely brush before breakfast. We recommend waking up, taking a big gulp of water, then brushing right before doing anything else.

“If you’re adamant about brushing after eating, wait at least 30 minutes after eating before brushing,” according to Dr. Hariawala, because your enamel needs time to chill before being brushed.

Happy brushing and breakfast-ing (in that order)!

Short on time in the AM?
Try quip to make breakfast brushing a breeze.

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