There are plenty of reasons people don't brush their teeth at night.
Some people don't because they know their breath is going to be terrible in the morning anyway.
Others don't because brushing in the morning alone has proven sufficient in keeping their teeth white.
And then there are those who are just too lazy to care.
But one California dentist has come forward with a few facts for those who don't believe there's any harm in not brushing at night.
Deepinder Sahota, DDS told the Huffington Post,
In the middle of the day, [run your tongue] across your teeth right around the gum line. You’ll find something sticky or fuzzy. That's plaque.
You can't see it, but plaque is almost always there.
So you can't just let it sit in your teeth overnight, or it will start to work its way deeper into your teeth and gums.
Brushing at night, Sahota says, "disrupts that bacteria so it doesn't stay in place."
Leaving plaque on your teeth is the only way it can turn into tartar and cause cavities.
The Fremont-based dentist adds,
You can start the process of a cavity by not brushing once, absolutely.
Sahota recommends brushing twice a day for two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste and soft-bristled brush because the harder ones will easily inflame the gums.
Inflamed gums are another side effect of not brushing at night and, if left untreated, your teeth aren't going to like hanging out there for much longer.
And to many, flossing seems like an act of torture straight out of "Hostel," but Sahota suggests doing it at least once a day.
It's also important not to half-ass a brushing session or replace it with supplemental methods like using mouthwash or chewing gum.
Mouthwash will make your mouth feel fresher, but it can't get rid of plaque, Sahota notes, and there's no type of gum that will have anywhere near the same effect as brushing.
So brush twice a day from now on because, while your date might not notice it, your gums sure will, and you won't have to worry about ever losing that smile.