Fasting for the month of Ramadan involves refraining from both food and drink during daylight hours. Not even water is allowed during the day, so does this mean Muslims can’t brush their teeth or use mouthwash?
The rules on cleaning your teeth during Ramadan aren’t clear-cut, and the topic is divisive amongst Muslims.
A quick scroll on Twitter seems to conclude that most Muslims do brush their teeth.
One Twitter user said: “Brush your teeth this Ramadan, there’s nothing wrong with brushing.”
Another tweeted: “For all the people that don’t brush their teeth during Ramadan, IT DOESN’T BREAK YOUR FAST. Just don’t swallow and you’ll be safe.”
In fact, many Twitter users pointed out that it is not haram to brush your teeth during Ramadan.
Most people don’t seem to believe brushing your teeth is Haram, which means when something is forbidden or proscribed by Islamic law.
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However, there are still some people who don’t want to risk it.
One tweet reads: “Don’t feel pressured to brush your teeth this Ramadan.”
Another added: “You can only brush your teeth before sunrise, and after sunset.”
So can you brush your teeth during the month when the sun is up?
Express.co.uk scoured the internet for the answer.
Can you brush your teeth during Ramadan?
Brushing your teeth and gargling water both involve putting water in your mouth, but the fasting rules don’t technically outlaw this.
Muslims are not allowed to eat or drink outside of the iftar and suhur meals which occur when the Sun is down.
If you brush your teeth when the Sun is down, this is fine.
But what about after the Sun has come up when you are fasting?
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Stricter Muslims brush with a miswak twig called siwaak, instead.
It is believed that this is what the prophet Mohammed used to clean his teeth.
They are thought to have been used more than 7,000 years ago, but they are an effective antibacterial device that controls plaque and cleans your teeth.
However, maintaining a high standard of personal hygiene is considered important within the religion, so brushing your teeth normally may be encouraged in some families.
More laid-back Muslims believe brushing your teeth with toothpaste and water or swishing mouthwash is fine as long as you don’t swallow anything.
When can I brush my teeth during Ramadan?
After the Maghrib evening prayer, the daily fast is to be broken.
Iftar times vary depending on where you live and what day it is.
You can brush your teeth guilt-free after the Iftar, but before the Sahoor.
Here are the key timings for Maghrib in London throughout Ramadan 2020
- April 23: 8.14pm
- April 24: 8.16pm
- April 25: 8.18pm
- April 26: 8.19pm
- April 27: 8.21pm
- April 28: 8.23pm
- April 29: 8.24pm
- April 30: 8.26pm
- May 1: 8.28pm
- May 2: 8.29pm
- May 3: 8.31pm
- May 4: 8.32pm
- May 5: 8.34pm
- May 6: 8.36pm
- May 7: 8.37pm
- May 8: 8.39pm
- May 9: 8.40pm
- May 10: 8.42pm
- May 11: 8.43pm
- May 12: 8.45pm
- May 13: 8.47pm
- May 14: 8.48pm
- May 15: 8.50pm
- May 16: 8.51pm
- May 17: 8.53pm
- May 18: 8.54pm
- May 19: 8.55pm
- May 20: 8.57pm
- May 21: 8.58pm
- May 22: 9.00pm
- May 23: 9.01pm
- May 24: 9.02pm
The timings above are only accurate for London, because the times of sunrise and sunset vary across the UK.
Here is a guide to working out when to break your fast where you are:
- Birmingham: 6 minutes later
- Bradford: 8 minutes later
- Cardiff: 12 minutes later
- Glasgow: 40 minutes later
- Leeds: 4 minutes later
- Liverpool: 9 minutes later
- Manchester: 7 minutes later
- Middlesbrough: 14 minutes later
The fast begins after the Sahur meal (also known as the Suhoor, Sehri, or Sahari).
If you choose to brush your teeth after, you shouldn’t swallow the water.
Fajr happens at the following times just before the sun comes up, and Sahoor must be eaten before:
- April 23: 4.10am
- April 24: 4.07am
- April 25: 4.05am
- April 26: 4.03am
- April 27: 4.00am
- April 28: 3.58am
- April 29: 3.57am
- April 30: 3.54am
- May 1: 3.51am
- May 2: 3.49am
- May 3: 3.46am
- May 4: 3.44am
- May 5: 3.41am
- May 6: 3.40am
- May 7: 3.37am
- May 8: 3.35am
- May 9: 3.33am
- May 10: 3.31am
- May 11: 3.28am
- May 12: 3.37am
- May 13: 3.24am
- May 14: 3.23am
- May 15: 3.20am
- May 16: 3.19am
- May 17: 3.16am
- May 18: 3.15am
- May 19: 3.13am
- May 20: 3.11am
- May 21: 3.09am
- May 22: 3.08am
- May 23: 3.06am
- May 24: 3.03am
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