Sadly, no toothbrush lasts forever. But, how do you know when to replace your favorite toothbrush? There are many factors to consider which we will discuss. Neglecting to replace a toothbrush or electronic toothbrush head regularly can have a negative impact on your oral health and even spread infection.
When is the Best Time to Replace your Toothbrush?
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends replacing toothbrushes every 3 to 4 months. However, there are some instances that warrant replacing it even sooner, such as when the bristles become visibly frayed. A worn-out toothbrush can make tooth brushing less effective and increase your risk for developing tooth decay.
Other Reasons to Replace your Toothbrush
Toothbrushes should also be replaced if you have been sick. Bacterial and viral infections can spread, making it a good reason to throw it out and start fresh. Getting new toothbrushes for children can also be fun and persuade them to maintain good oral hygiene. There are many fun and cool designs that can make your children look forward to brushing.
In addition, if anyone else uses your toothbrush, you’ll want to replace it with a new one. Bacteria and other germs can spread from person to person, so it is best to not risk getting sick. If you are having specific dental concerns, or have certain oral appliances such as braces, your dental professionals may recommend obtaining an electric toothbrush to help remove dental bacterial plaque efficiently.
What if you do not Replace your Toothbrush?
Failing to replace your toothbrush can make brushing less effective at removing plaque build-up, which can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and many other oral issues. Plus, it may be harboring harmful bacteria that can also put your smile and health at risk.
Types of Toothbrush
There are two types of toothbrushes to consider: manual and electric. Both options can help you efficiently and effectively take care of your teeth. No matter which option you choose, be sure that it has the ADA Seal of Acceptance, and has soft-bristles.
Electric toothbrushes can be a great addition to your oral care supplies. Many brands offer disposable heads that rotate or vibrate to remove plaque from the surfaces of teeth and at your gumline, and can be replaced when the time is needed. Some electric toothbrushes even have Bluetooth capability, allowing you to connect to a phone device and app that can tell you how well you are brushing, keep track of your brushing activity, and offer you tips on how to improve your brushing. They also tend to have a two-minute timer and sensors that help identify the amount of pressure you are applying to your teeth and gums.
A manual toothbrush can give you easy control over how you brush your teeth. In contrast to electric toothbrushes, they are relatively inexpensive, they do not have to be charged to work, they are easy to travel with, and are essentially soundless.
How Long does a Toothbrush Last?
Toothbrushes typically lasts for about 3 months, but because you are using them every day, they may need to be replaced even sooner.
How Should you Care for your Toothbrush?
Despite the specific type of toothbrush you have, it is essential to keep it clean. The American Dental Association recommends rinsing your toothbrush with water after each use to remove any remaining toothpaste and food particles. Toothbrushes should also be placed in an open space area and an upright position to allow the bristles to air dry. If a toothbrush is stored in a dark and closed container, this allows bacteria and other microbes to thrive and buildup on your toothbrush.
All in all, don’t be afraid to replace your toothbrush regularly. Also, avoid sharing your toothbrush with others, even family members, as everyone has their own specific oral bacteria.