Have you ever wondered how long you should keep a toothbrush before replacing it? Are you wondering right now why you Haven't asked yourself this question? Well, either way, here's some advice from the pros all over the internet on how to properly keep your mouth cleaning tool and for how long.
The American Dental Association has a few things to say on how to maintain your toothbrush. Here are their recommendations broken down into a short list:
- Do not share toothbrushes.
- Thoroughly rinse toothbrushes with tap water after brushing to remove any remaining toothpaste and debris.
- Do not routinely cover toothbrushes or store them in closed containers.
Hopefully these are some pretty straightforward recommendations to you. Sharing toothbrushes is gross. It happens sometimes, but let's try to not make a habit of it. Just like a paint brush, we're going to want to rinse the toothbrush so that it's totally clean after use. Covering a toothbrush could capture the moisture from the rinsing, and make for a nice home for harmful bacteria. Gross.
Three to four months. That's how long the ADA recommends keeping a toothbrush. After that, the bristles loose their tension and are less able to scrub away the day. The ADA also mentions that kids toothbrushes often require more frequent replacement. Keep an eye on it for them, it'll save you some dentist fees later down the road and make for a more pleasant high school experience.
Some say that flossing is as important, if not more important than brushing. You see, flossing gets all the food stuck between your teeth out. This will prevent the bacteria that causes plaque. That same bacteria can also be harmful for your heart health. As such, flossing is not only good for your looks and your teeth, but's it's also good for your heart. With cardiovascular illnesses being a major concern in America, a little flossing might go a long way.
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