Is it possible to brush your teeth too much/too hard?

Many people are under the impression that in order to properly clean their teeth, it is necessary for them to brush longer and harder. Unfortunately, what they don’t realize is that excessive brushing is unnecessary and may even be harmful to their teeth and gums.

Prolonged and strenuous brushing poses two major problems to the teeth and gums:

  • The gums get worn away
  • The tooth enamel is stripped

If the gum is worn out as a result of excessive brushing, the nerves beneath the gum are exposed which makes it painful and extremely difficult to eat certain foods. Since the gum acts as a barrier between the sensitive nerves and the external oral cavity, any hot or cold food that touches these nerves triggers a painful sensation while eating.

Furthermore, it also paves the way for other oral conditions because once the roots of the teeth are exposed, bacteria and other harmful agents can cause gum diseases or tooth loss.

As for the teeth themselves, when they are scrubbed down rigorously, the protective enamel covering begins to scratch off from the surface of the teeth. Enamel is the outermost layer of the teeth which makes healthy teeth appear sparkling white and beautiful.

Once the enamel deteriorates, however, the middle layer of the teeth called dentin becomes exposed. This layer contains pathways which lead to the nerves, thereby making the teeth very sensitive.

With that said, let’s focus on the correct way to brush our teeth. Firstly, it is sufficient to brush our teeth for approximately two minutes. This timeframe will provide enough time to properly clean all areas of the teeth. Moreover, teeth should be brushed in circular motions rather than side to side or up and down.

Once you go beyond the two minute margin, you may start to harm your teeth. So, resist the urge to brush excessively. If you feel compelled to brush longer because you think something is stuck between your teeth, then try flossing or use a toothpick to remove the food particles.

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