Floss, Brush, Rinse – The Proper Nighttime Dental Hygiene Process Explained  

Every night (hopefully!), you are stepping into your bathroom, reaching for your oral hygiene tools, and performing your typical routine almost mindlessly. However, if you are like most people, whatever habits you currently have when it comes to nighttime oral care routines have been set in stone for quite some time. You may not even know if the process or methodology is where it needs to be. At Cassara Dental, we’re all about proactive dental health care, so we always like to dig into the details about taking care of your teeth at home. Let’s break down the steps of the process for a crash course in nighttime dental hygiene 101.

Grab Your Floss and Clean Around Each Tooth

Do you brush or floss first—it’s an age-old debate and may seem like just a matter of preference. However, flossing before you brush has been shown to be the best plan of attack. In a randomized clinical trial, people who brushed before flossing were found to have much more plaque accumulation between their teeth than those who flossed and then brushed. Grab between 12 and 18 inches of floss, a few floss picks, or your preferred flossing setup, and get to work cleaning around each side of every tooth.

Brush for Two Minutes, the Right Way

Once you’ve flossed for the night, you may be tempted to reach for the mouthwash, but move onto brushing instead. Two minutes is thought to be the magic number for most brushers; this is substantial time to hit every exposed tooth surface. Be sure that when you brush, you:

  • Brush around the gum line in the front and back of your teeth
  • Pay close attention to wisdom teeth and larger molars in the back of your mouth
  • Brush your tongue to remove bacteria

Don’t Forget the Mouthwash

Mouthwash is an excellent final step to your nighttime dental hygiene routine. The quick rinse helps to slough away any residue left behind by flossing and brushing and helps to eradicate any remaining bacteria that may be lingering in your mouth. Try to swish and gargle for about 30 seconds to get the whole of your mouth rinsed.

Trust Your Mountain View Dentist for More Oral Care Tips

When you are proactive about your oral care routine at home, you are much less likely to have problems when you visit the dentist. For more good tips about taking good care of your smile, take a look at the valuable information on or blog at Cassara Dental. Need help with taking care of your smile? Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a dental checkup in Mountain View, CA.

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