Should You Spit or Rinse After Brushing Your Teeth?

Should You Spit or Rinse After Brushing Your Teeth?


In short - all dentists recommend that you shouldn't rinse after brushing your teeth. This is because the protective fluoride in your toothpaste won't 'cling' onto the teeth if you rinse it off. 

Fluoride is important because it ''resurfaces' your teeth and strengthens them, providing protection against decay, sensitivity and bacterial growth. Rinsing the fluoride away too soon may diminish its effectiveness and leave your teeth defensiveness against the acids and bacteria that can attack your enamel. 

Should You Spit or Rinse After Brushing Your Teeth?

When you spit out the toothpaste without rinsing, you retain the fluoride on your teeth, providing ongoing protection against cavities and damage. 

For some people, the lingering taste and texture of toothpaste in their mouths after spitting (instead of rinsing) is unpleasant. To combat the habit of rinsing after you brush, we would recommend trying different types of toothpaste until you find one that doesn't feel as uncomfortable when you spit instead of rinse. 

Can I Use Mouthwash After Brushing My Teeth?

Ideally, you should use mouthwash before brushing, 30 minutes after brushing, or at a different time altogether. Mouthwash has fluoride in it, but the fluoride in toothpaste is more effective. Indeed, using mouthwash straight after brushing can wash away the concentrated fluoride toothpaste left on your teeth, reducing its effectiveness in preventing cavities. 

When deciding how much mouthwash to use, most bottles have a measuring line on the cap, but for the best results, you should only use about 20ml of mouthwash. Make sure you're not using mouthwash more than twice a day.

For more information about when and how to use mouthwash, checkout this blog. 

Should You Rinse After Flossing? 

The simple answer is - yes! It is recommend that you rinse after you floss to ensure plaque build-up and leftover food is washed out, which might mean you need to floss before you brush your teeth, so the concentrated fluoride in your toothpaste isn't rinsed out. 

However, if you aren't using a fluoride toothpaste (which we don't recommend), then rinsing after brushing won't make a difference.

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Why Fluoride Toothpaste is Recommended

Fluoride toothpaste is recommended by dentists for a number of different reasons. The main reason being that fluoride is effective in preventing tooth decay and cavities. This is because it helps to strengthen tooth enamel, making it much more resistant to acid attacks from bacteria and sugars in the mouth. 

Other benefits of fluoride toothpaste include:

  • Improved tooth sensitivity
  • It promotes the remineralisation of weakened tooth enamel
  • It helps to prevent the formation of plaque

Who Shouldn't Use Fluoride Toothpaste

While fluoride is totally safe and beneficial for most individuals, there are certain groups who may need to avoid excessive fluoride exposure.

These are typically infants, children, people with fluoride sensitivity and those with kidney disorders. 

For those with specific health conditions, it is important that you consult with a healthcare professional or dentist who can provide personalised guidance on fluoride use and the best oral care practices.

Should You Spit or Rinse After Brushing Your Teeth?

Brush Fresh is founded and run by a group of UK-based dentists, who specialise in environmentally-friendly and sustainable dental products. From biodegradable bamboo toothbrushes to zero waste toothbrush tablets, our product range has been designed to put both your dental health and the environment first. For more information and dental care advice, head over to our blog page or get in contact with us here.

Date Published: 02/12/2021

Last Updated: 30/11/2023

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