“For hundreds of thousands of years, humans did not brush their teeth. What happens if I stop altogether?”

I was wandering the internet when I saw the question. It is indeed a very interesting question. Just in case your family and friends suddenly bring this up for discussion on a cozy Saturday night, here is my thought on this.

Why can’t we stop brushing and be as natural as possible like our ancestors?

There were lots of differences compared to our ancestors’ era. Sugar happened. Preservatives happened. Snack happened. Gene-modified happened. You name it! Our diet is completely different from theirs and diet plays a BIG part in our oral diseases. When we introduce more sugar/starchy food to our mouths, we increase the risk of oral diseases. I also assume that they ate more vegetables/ fruits than us now as we now want food to be soft and easy to eat. The fiber in vegetables and fruits actually helps to break up the buildup left behind after meals and keeps our teeth cleaner. Another advantage of eating more vegetables is that their jaw worked more so it developed more. Our jaws right now are actually narrower so most people have more or fewer problems with teeth crowding. Ahhh, those crowding areas are the HARDEST to keep clean. I can list several other differences between our era and thousands of years ago but the blog will be too long. We just don’t live in the same environment and eat the same thing anymore.

So what will happen if we stop brushing our teeth?

Cavities and gum disease will happen. Depends on your diet, those scary things will happen right away or take some time but they surely will. With all the new technology on the market for better oral hygiene, there is still “47.2% of adults aged 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease” and “About one-fourth of young children, half of the adolescents and more than 90% of adults experienced tooth decay” – according to CDC*. Imagine how bad it will be if we just stop brushing.

But then, why is it still bad eventhough we do brush?

Brushing and flossing are good, but more importantly, we need to brush and floss with the correct technique. You would think that people know how to brush and floss but for some reason, they don’t. I won’t go too deep into this topic as it deserves a whole blog post for itself. Meanwhile, keep brushing and flossing as a beautiful smile is always on trend!

As your dentist in Federal Way, WA, we value our patients’ trust and time. If you have been our patients already, thank you for choosing us. If you are in search of a new dental home, we are just a call away at 253.941.6365.