The general rule of thumb is to switch your toothbrush out every 3 months, but that’s not the only factor that keeps your toothbrush clean. Your toothbrush is constantly wet which means there’s a high chance for bacteria or mold to grow if you’re not careful. Here are a few things you can do to make sure your toothbrush stays nice and clean for every time you brush.
- Do not leave your toothbrush in sitting water. This means do not just leave your toothbrush lying down on your sink right after rinsing it. The water that gathers around your brush is filled with bacteria and your toothbrush will latch onto all of it, especially when it’s wet. Instead – use a cup (with a drain on the bottom) or a toothbrush stand to make sure the water has a chance to evaporate off of the brush.
- Do not leave your toothbrush next to or on top of the toilet. As a matter of fact, try and leave your toothbrush behind the mirror, or have the brush encased somehow. You probably already know, but the toilet doesn’t always flush everything downwards and whatever may come out should not be anywhere near your mouth.
- If you notice an odor coming from your toothbrush (similar to wet laundry) take a cup of vinegar and baking soda and swish your brush around in it for 30 seconds to a minute. Then let it sit for another 5-10 mins. Rinse off the brush very thoroughly. If the odor is still there, throw out your toothbrush and use a new one.
- The second you notice any of the colored bristles fading, switch your toothbrush to a new one. This is exactly why those bristles are colored. Also, if your toothbrush is starting to look frayed and the bristles are no longer standing straight up, change your toothbrush.
- Use mouthwash BEFORE brushing your teeth. This means that most of the bacteria will have been cleaned out before your toothbrush even touches your teeth. Remember to rinse the mouthwash out thoroughly before brushing.
If you have any questions or need to see a dentist, call Candlewood Dental Care in New Fairfield, CT. Dr. Lorraine Burio has been treating and educating patients for over twenty-five years. Our office serves the New Fairfield, New Milford, Danbury, and Sherman areas of CT and Pawling, Patterson and Putnam Lake of New York. You can call us at 203-746-1200.