Why does everything taste different after brushing?


Orange juice is the common culprit, but if you have brushed your teeth then eaten or drank soon afterwards, you have probably noticed that nothing really tastes very good! We assumed it was just the minty taste of the toothpaste mixing with other flavors, but upon a little research, found that there is some actual “science” behind the annoyance.

Sodium laureth sulfate is actually the culprit. It is an ingredient in most toothpaste that causes it to foam and uniformly spread around your whole mouth. It also assists with removing food, plaque, and other debris from your teeth. Sodium laureth sulfate affects your taste buds as well by hampering the ability of the receptors to pick up sweet tastes in foods or drinks. To make matters worse, it enhances the ability to taste bitters, so anything bitter you consume will taste exceptionally bitter.

Saliva carries the toothpaste out of your mouth in about 20-30 minutes, so once that sodium laureth sulfate is out of your mouth, you can safely drink your coffee or eat breakfast in peace!

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About the author

A practicing dentist since 1982, Dr. Gary Imm, provides advanced cosmetic dentistry, including smile makeovers, sedation, implant and TMJ services. He is committed to progressive, extraordinary care for his guests. All Smiles Dental Care trains at least 300 hours each year at such prestigious centers as the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dentistry. (LVI)