While it IS possible to over brush your teeth – it’s not necessarily how often you brush but rather the brush you are using and your technique.
When toothbrushes are new, they have rounded ends on every bristle, but once these bristles start to wear away, your toothbrush ends up more like a knife with jagged edges. It is possible to over brush, and, there are a great many of us that do just that. Most of us are obsessed with brushing and keeping our teeth clean, and it’s just that we are using the wrong toothbrushes, and, brushing incorrectly. People can actually brush away their tooth structure and have worn their teeth away, simply from using a toothbrush.
It is possible to do *too much of a good thing* when it comes to brushing your teeth.
Firstly, take some time to consider a toothbrush and how it is made. A toothbrush is made by taking a group of nylon bristles and inserting them into a nylon handle. It’s a machine that cuts these bristles and drops them into a molten nylon handle, the machine then cuts the bristles to make them a uniform height. It’s at this point during the manufacturing process if you could take a microscope and look at the bristles under extreme magnification you would see thousands of little nylon tubes sitting there with jagged and serrated edges – all waiting just to scrape away at your precious enamel and dentin.
Fortunately, there is another step in the process of manufacturing tooth brushes that most – but not all, quality tooth brushes under go. After those bristles have been cut to be the same height they are treated by a process that turns those sharp knife-like edges and rounds them into soft little domes. This is the process that makes the tooth brush safe to use – it will no longer scrape away your tooth structure. Some tooth brush manufacturers do a better job during this process than others.
When you use your toothbrush, the smoothness also gets worn away, back to its original state thanks to brushing. This is one of the reasons your dentist will tell you to change your toothbrush often. You should throw away your toothbrush BEFORE the bristles start to splay out. Once the bristles have splayed it means you are using a toothbrush that is too abrasive and has been wearing away at the structure of your teeth.
If you brush twice a day, you really should replace your toothbrush once a month.
If you use a high-end quality toothbrush and you throw it away before it becomes too abrasive, you should be able to eat frequently and normally brush without feeling guilt or doing damage.
For most people brushing has been ingrained in them since they were little, you’re taught to brush after each meal and before you go to bed – that’s four times a day! Of course, when you are at school or work it becomes hard to brush after lunch, so many people brush at least twice a day – after breakfast and after dinner/before bed
Brushing two to three times a day is enough, brushing too often can also cause teeth to wear down to the enamel and irritate your gums, in severe cases it can even expose the roots which will make your teeth more susceptible to other problems.
The purpose behind brushing your teeth is to remove the bacteria that builds up in your mouth, but it can take 12 hours for the bacteria to build up enough to hurt your teeth. If you brush your teeth twice a day, using a gentle circular motion to clean them and floss afterwards, you are providing the proper hygiene for healthy teeth and use a soft bristle brush to avoid abrasive action.
Just remember that acids tend to corrode the enamel of your teeth, which is why saliva is there, to break down those corrosive effects of acid. Unfortunately, if you brush your teeth directly after eating or drinking something acidic, you are actually brushing that acid into your teeth, so wait at least an hour after drinking or eating something acidic like citrus fruits or soft drinks.