While it’s simple to know when you need to change out torn clothing or worn out shoes, many patients are unsure how often to swap out their toothbrush. Brushing and flossing the teeth is essential to ensuring a healthy smile, but brushing with a worn toothbrush may do more harm than good. Patients may brush harder to remove plaque from the teeth, which can irritate the gum tissues and cause bleeding and swelling. Instead, patients should change their toothbrush regularly to ensure proper care.
When should I buy a new toothbrush?
The standard timeframe for replacing a toothbrush is every three to four months. This ensures that the bristles do not become frayed and the toothbrush works effectively. Children who may brush harder than adults may need their toothbrushes replaced more often than an adult. It is key to look for signs of wear, such as frayed bristles and toothpaste that may have dried near the base of the bristles.
What if I’m sick?
Another time when patients will want to purchase a new toothbrush is when they are sick. Conditions such as strep throat can cause bacteria to remain on the toothbrush, and some patients can be reinfected with the condition if they continue to brush with it. If you have dealt with the cold, flu, or other medical conditions, it is better to be “safe than sorry” and replace the toothbrush.
How should I care for my toothbrush to extend its lifespan?
It is important that patients keep their toothbrushes clean. Rinse the toothbrush after brushing and store the toothbrush in the vertical position so it can dry fully. It is best to avoid putting the toothbrush in a closed container as this can contribute to bacteria buildup. If you are traveling, it may be best to use a disposable toothbrush during the trip and avoid the use of a storage container.
Learn more about dental education
Are you interested in learning more about how to care for your smile? Do you live in the area of Columbus, OH and want to discuss your oral health needs with an area professional? Contact Dr. Sharon Schindler of Schindler Dentistry at (614) 586-0609 to schedule your appointment at 775 Yard Street, Suite #175. Dr. Sharon Schindler accepts new patients into her revolutionary dental facility for comprehensive oral health care solutions.