Why Do Some Foods Taste Bad Right After Brushing?


We’ve All Done It – And Immediately Regretted It.

Have you ever tried taking a sip of your mango shake or an orange juice just after you brushed your teeth? Oops, not quite what you expected.

Did you ever wonder why the difference in taste happens? The alteration in our taste receptors occurs because of one of one key ingredients present in most of the toothpastes: Sodium Laureth Sulfate.

What is Sodium Laureth Sulphate?

If you read the label of ingredients on the toothpaste, you can find words like SLES or SLS. They are abbreviations for sodium laureth sulphate. It is a popular foaming agent which is technically called as a surfactant. A surfactant is added into toothpastes so that it can spread evenly within the mouth. Another property of SLS is that it can emulsify the staining food particles and break down debris. In short, SLS enhances the cleansing property of toothpaste and makes brushing of teeth easier.

How can SLS act on your taste buds?

As SLS helps the toothpaste to spread evenly inside your mouth, the taste buds also get covered with this component and there are two effects of SLS on our taste buds.

  1. The receptors that are responsible for sweet tastes from foods or drinks are partially blocked. Because of this reaction, the sweet things you consume just after brushing your teeth appear tasteless or less sweet.
  2. Another action of SLS is that bitterness is increased soon after use of toothpaste in the mouth. Hence, any food or beverage that is even slightly sour or bitter, will be magnified in its sour or bitter taste!

The best part is that after just 30 minutes after tooth-brushing, the taste sensation returns to normal. So wait just a few more minutes before enjoying that mango shake or OJ!

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