A toothbrush is the most important and the first-line defence against the harmful bacteria in the mouth that can cause cavities and bad breath. We always throw out expired food, restock health supplements, and replace our self-care products but toothbrushes are the most ignored part of the daily routine. Patients frequently ask how often should I replace my toothbrush, well the answer to this question is very simple. As our dentists in Oxnard center suggest, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), one should replace their toothbrush every 3-4 months.
Why is it important to replace toothbrush:
It is not just the length of time your toothbrush has been used but also the condition of the bristles that decide whether to replace it or not. If you brush properly, twice a day, your toothbrush goes through a lot of wear and tear. A toothbrush is meant to do an effective cleaning and reach fine spaces between the teeth. A toothbrush cannot perform its proper function with tattered, frayed, and bent bristles. Even if a toothbrush keeps its brand new form maintained, one should always keep in mind over time a toothbrush possibly has had contact with blood, saliva, food particles, and contamination. Even if you clean your toothbrush regularly with tap water, it might have some harmful bacteria. The chance of contamination increases many folds especially after getting sick.
What happens when you don’t change toothbrush:
Using the same toothbrush for long periods, not only leads to improper cleaning but also causes accumulation of food particles and debris at various areas around the teeth that can lead to several gum diseases and an overall decline in oral and general health. At Channel Island Family dental Office, our dentist in Oxnard always educate the patients about the role of a clean toothbrush in maintaining the good health of teeth, gums, and other oral tissues.
What do dentists recommend:
- With proper toothbrushing twice a day, your toothbrush wears out quickly and it is important to recognize the signs to keep a check on your toothbrush to maintain good oral health.
- Most dental professionals recommend, one should use a toothbrush with soft bristles and should be changed after every 3-4 months.
- For those people who brush more than twice or brush after meals, say three to four times a day, and tend to use a lot of pressure with the brush need frequent replacement of toothbrush.
- Always remember, when the bristles start to fray and lose their stiffness, the toothbrush is almost ready to be replaced.
How to keep your toothbrush clean:
- To ensure efficient cleaning you should properly clean and maintain your toothbrush. As we all know mouth is the home for multiple microorganisms so it is important to carefully rinse your toothbrush with fresh water after every use.
- In addition to keeping it clean, ADA also recommends that you should never share your toothbrush with anyone else.
- Storing your toothbrush properly is as important as keeping it clean. ADA recommends keeping your toothbrush in a vertical upright position with bristles up. This helps in allowing the bristles to dry naturally killing most of the harmful bacteria. Placing a toothbrush covered in a plastic cap or any closed container can allow bacteria to grow and flourish. Soaking your toothbrush in a solution of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide or an alcohol-containing mouthwash decreases significant bacterial load (approx 85 percent).
At the Channel Island Family Dental office, we provide a wide range of dental services at our various branches. Improve your smile and health with us. Feel free to call and book your appointments today with our dentist in Oxnard, Ventura, and Port Hueneme.