Your toothbrush was designed to help you clean your teeth. Can you remember the last time you replaced your toothbrush? Do you know how old your toothbrush is? If you answered no, then it is time to get a new toothbrush!
Below are tips for caring for your toothbrush in order to keep it as clean as possible between replacements:
- Rinse your toothbrush after each use. During brushing, you are helping to remove bacteria-laden plaque that forms on the teeth throughout the day. Some of this bacteria, as well as small food particles, will become trapped in the bristles of the toothbrush. By rinsing your toothbrush under fast, running water after each use, you are helping to rinse away left over debris that remains.
- Store your toothbrush uncovered and upright. As with all bacteria, oral bacteria thrive in moist environments. By storing your toothbrush uncovered and upright, you are allowing it to air dry as quickly as possible to eliminate a moist environment. If you must cover your toothbrush during travel, make sure that it is completely dry before packing.
- Keep your toothbrush away from the toilet. If you use a bathroom that does not have a door separating the toilet from the rest of the room, it is essential that you keep your toothbrush as far away from the toilet as possible. With every flush of the toilet there is overspray that enters the air. This overspray contains urine and fecal matter and you do not want it landing on your toothbrush.
- Do not share your toothbrush. Just as your toothbrush traps bacteria and particles in the bristles from your mouth, someone elses toothbrush does the same thing. If you share a toothbrush with someone else, you are also sharing bacteria and left behind food particles and that's just gross.
- Replace your toothbrush often. Even with proper care, your toothbrush will get dirty over time. The American Dental Association recommends that you replace your toothbrush every 3-6 months in order to ensure that you are using a proper tool for cleaning your teeth.
- Replace your toothbrush after illness. Germs can linger for 7-10 days on any surface. If you have been ill with a cold, the flu, strep, a stomach bug, or any other illness, it is important that you replace your toothbrush in order to avoid re-infecting yourself.
At Meadowbrook Family Dental, we want to help you attain the healthiest smile possible. Call today to schedule an appointment.
Posted on behalf of Meadowbrook Family Dental