You pick it up and use it multiple times a day and likely don’t think about it again until the next use…we’re talking about your toothbrush, folks.
This oral hygiene tool keeps those pearly whites health in between teeth cleaning appointments, so how do you go about keeping it clean enough to go into your mouth? Check out this quick toothbrush maintenance guide for the answers.
When To Change Your Toothbrush
Toothbrushes don’t last forever, and that’s just one reason why your dentist will likely provide you with a complementary one after each teeth cleaning. Here’s when dental professionals advise their patients toss old brushes and start fresh.
The Test of Time: Toothbrush bristles lose efficacy after three months of normal wear and tear fighting plaque and food debris. The bristles fan out and weaken, so the American Dental Associations recommends replacing them at least this often.
After a Contagious Illness: Those bristles can harbor infectious bacteria sourced by colds and infection. After a bad bout with a contagious illness, avoid reinfection by replacing your toothbrush. During an illness, take time to disinfect your brush after each use with hot water and an anti-bacterial oral rinse for good measure.
Signs of Fungus or Bacteria: If you fail to rinse and dry your toothbrush after each use, the chances of residual bacteria accumulating and fungus developing increase. This is why you shouldn’t cover your toothbrush while its damp, but definitely want to do so when traveling to keep the head germ-free.
A Warning About Not Changing Brushes Often Enough
Gum infections result from poor brushing, and an old brush cannot provide optimal results. You’ll also risk bacteria buildup that can source gingivitis and oral diseases that can compromise dental health.
Changing brushes every three months and routine dental cleaning appointments will help preserve your smile for life.