It has happened to everyone; when you eat or drink something after brushing your teeth, you experience an unexpected change in taste. Orange juice, especially in the morning after brushing your teeth, is the best known example of this. So what is the scientific reason behind this strange change in taste?

Chemical Content of Toothpaste and Its Effects on the Sense of Taste

Why Does Food Taste Strange After Brushing Your Teeth?

This is due to surfactants such as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) in toothpastes. These ingredients make the toothpaste foam and enhance its cleaning function, while also having an effect on our taste buds. SLS temporarily suppresses sweet taste receptors, which causes food to feel less sweet.

On the other hand, these chemicals emphasize sour flavors. This makes acidic drinks taste more sour or bitter. Especially when acidic drinks such as orange juice are consumed, toothpaste residues disrupt the natural flavor of these drinks, leaving a more sour taste.

The Process of Normalization of Our Sense of Taste

Fortunately, this effect is temporary. After about 30 minutes, saliva dilutes the chemicals in the toothpaste and returns our sense of taste to normal. For this reason, instead of consuming food or drink immediately after brushing your teeth, waiting for a while will be beneficial for you to get the real flavor of the food. Thus, you will have a more enjoyable taste experience and protect your dental health.

Source: Science Focus

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