Perhaps no other tool in your house is as taken for granted than your toothbrush. Your toothbrush is a tool designed to clean your teeth to help keep your mouth healthy. Yet, how often do you care for your toothbrush? If you are not taking care of your toothbrush, you are simply putting a dirty tool inside your mouth while still expecting it to clean your mouth.
Below are helpful, simple tips to properly care for your toothbrush so that it benefits you:
- Rinse your toothbrush well. Your toothbrush is a tool that was designed to loosen and help remove bacteria-laden plaque from the teeth. As you brush your teeth, plaque will become trapped in the bristles of the toothbrush. By rinsing your toothbrush well under fast, running water, you will help to rinse away plaque so that you do not reintroduce it to your mouth with the next use.
- Store your toothbrush upright and air it out. Bacteria thrive in moist environments, and your toothbrush is an ideal environment for bacteria to flourish. By storing your toothbrush upright and uncovered, you are eliminating the ideal environment. Keep your toothbrush uncovered at all times unless you are travelling – and even then, make sure your toothbrush is dry before you cover it.
- Keep your toothbrush away from the toilet. Many bathrooms do not have a door that closes off the toilet from the rest of the bathroom. In these bathrooms, it is important that you store your toothbrush strategically in order to keep it as far away from the toilet as possible. With every flush of the toilet there is overspray in the air containing urine and fecal matter. You do not want this landing on your toothbrush!
- Do not share your toothbrush. Remember, your toothbrush is a tool that removes bacteria-laden plaque from your mouth. If you share your toothbrush with someone else, you are also sharing bacteria. Everyone should have, and use, his or her own toothbrush at all times.
- Replace your toothbrush often. It is recommended that you replace your toothbrush every 3-6 months. If you have ever wondered why your dentist gives you a new toothbrush at every visit, it is because s/he understands how important it is to use a clean tool for cleaning your mouth.
- Replace your toothbrush after illness. Germs can linger for a week or longer on almost any surface. In order to prevent re-infection, it is important to replace your toothbrush after a cold, the flu, strep throat, a stomach bug, or any other illness.
At Green Dental of Alexandria, we are proud to help our patients achieve and maintain healthy smiles. Call today to schedule an appointment. We will have a new toothbrush ready for you!
Posted on behalf of Dr. Hye Park, Green Dental of Alexandria
1725 Duke St, Suite GR03
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: (703) 549-1725