Healthy Body

This Is the Biggest Mistake You’re Making When You Brush Your Teeth in the Shower

Tehrene Firman

Photo: Stocksy/Studio Firma

There’s two types of people in this world: Those who brush their teeth in the shower and those who don’t. While some people may scrunch their face at the idea of tackling their oral health where they bathe, Michaela Tozzi, DMD, a board-certified doctor of general and cosmetic dentistry, says multitasking is totally fine as long as you do it the right way.

Problems arise when you brush your teeth in the shower if you’re not storing your toothbrush properly before you put it into your mouth. According to Dr. Tozzi, one of the biggest mistakes people make is storing their toothbrush in the shower, which can cause a build-up of mold. “Bacteria grows much easier in a damp environment,” she says. “Because of that, you’ll want to store your toothbrush in a dry area—not on a wet shelf in the shower.”

Instead of setting your toothbrush down on a shelf in the shower where water pools, either dry it off and put it back in the toothbrush holder on your bathroom counter or use a sleek toothbrush holder ($6) that sticks to the wall, which helps your toothbrush air-dry quickly. (Just leave your shower curtain open for a while in order to increase air flow and allow everything to dry off properly.) Then make sure you know how to brush your teeth in the shower correctly.

“There are a few things to note when brushing your teeth in the shower,” says Dr. Tozzi. “Brush for two minutes and brush thoroughly, focusing on getting every area. Using a tongue scraper is also important, so include that in your shower routine as well. Once you’re finished brushing, be sure to rinse both your toothbrush and scraper thoroughly before storing them.”

Since the goal is brushing your teeth for two minutes, you can multi-task even more and do it at same time you’re letting your conditioner sit in your hair. You’ll be out of the shower and ready for the day in record time.

Here’s a closer look at a dermatologist’s shower routine:

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