It is recommended by the American Dental Association that a person should brush his/her teeth twice every day, preferably using a fluoride toothpaste. Regular brushing helps in removing plaque and food. If as a result of poor brushing habits plaque is not removed, it can convert into tartar which makes keeping teeth clean a difficult job. The importance of regular brushing cannot be overstressed. However, there are a few situations where brushing, as strange as it may sound, is not recommended.

The first situation where you should avoid brushing your teeth is when you have consumed food or drink that is acidic in nature. The acids in the food or drink can impair tooth enamel. In addition, if you brush too early, you will end up removing this enamel. Brushing your teeth beforehand is better in these cases.

Secondly, avoid brushing on the day of an oral surgery. However, you may brush after the day of your surgery provided you avoid the surgical site.

You should also avoid brushing your teeth if you have swollen or bleeding gums. Tissues that make up the gums are extremely fragile, so there is a high chance that you may end up damaging them.

In the opinion of most dentists, proper brushing should take at least two minutes. Some dentists go a step further and require their patients to brush for about three to four minutes. Therefore, if you are short on time and can’t spare two minutes, it’s better to put off brushing for another time, as a brushing exercise which lasts for less than two minutes will not give the fluoride ample time to work on the tooth enamel.

Lastly, it is not advisable to brush your teeth before tooth extraction. Cleaning teeth that are close to the wound area can raise serious complications.

So, as you can see, there are some times when it is recommended that you don’t brush your teeth. Of course, you should consult your dentist before you abstain from brushing your teeth.

As always contact your dentist before making any changes to your current brushing routine.