One of the most important tools that you have in your home is probably one of the most overlooked tools. Your toothbrush is a tool that was designed to clean your teeth and gum line; however, if this tool is not clean, it cannot do a very good job keeping your mouth clean.
Below are simple tips to care for your toothbrush so that it does the best job of caring for your mouth:
- Rinse your toothbrush well. Your toothbrush was designed to loosen and remove bacteria-laden plaque from the teeth. These bacteria easily become trapped in the bristles of your toothbrush and will reenter your mouth if you do not rinse your toothbrush well after each use. By holding your toothbrush under fast, running water for about five seconds, you will help to rinse these bacteria away.
- Store your toothbrush upright, uncovered, and allow it to air dry. As with all bacteria, the bacteria from your mouth thrive in moist environments. Your toothbrush is an ideal environment for bacteria to flourish. It is important for you to store your toothbrush upright and uncovered so that it will air dry quickly and eliminate the ideal environment. If you must cover your toothbrush for travel, make sure that your toothbrush is completely dry before packing it.
- Do not share your toothbrush. Remember, your toothbrush removes plaque from your mouth, and a toothbrush also removes plaque from another person’s mouth. By sharing a toothbrush, you will be sharing plaque – and that is just gross!
- Replace your toothbrush after illness. Germs can linger for a week or longer on almost any surface. If you have been ill with a cold, the flu, strep throat, a stomach bug, or any other contagious illness, it is important that you replace your toothbrush in order to prevent re-infection.
- Keep your toothbrush away from the toilet. In bathrooms that do not have a door separating the toilet from the rest of the bathroom, it is vital that you strategically place 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 that will land on your toothbrush if it is in its path. Enough said.
- Replace your toothbrush often. Over time, bacteria will accumulate on your toothbrush. It is recommended that you replace your toothbrush every 3-6 months in order to ensure that you are using a clean tool to clean your mouth. if you have every questioned why your dentist gives you a new toothbrush after each visit, it is because s/he understands how important it is to use a clean toothbrush to clean your teeth.
At South Texas Dental, we care about your oral health. Call today to schedule an appointment. We promise to have a new toothbrush ready for you when you get here!
Posted on Behalf of South Texas Dental