Whether you prefer to use a manual toothbrush or you like electric ones, it won’t be doing much good if it has become old and frayed over time. Do you even remember when you last got a new one? Most people don’t know the right amount of time that they should use their toothbrush before investing in new ones. Continue reading to learn when you should change your toothbrush and some steps you can take to get the most out of it.
When Should You Replace a Manual Toothbrush?
Manual toothbrushes are cheap and easily accessible. They do a great job at cleaning your teeth if you are using proper technique as well. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you should be replacing your toothbrush every three to four months. After having it for that long, the bristles will be frayed, and they won’t be nearly as effective at removing food debris, plaque and bacteria. The more that is left behind, the more likely that you are to develop cavities and gum disease in the future.
When Should You Replace the Head of an Electric Toothbrush?
If you have an electric toothbrush, you should replace it every 12 weeks. This needs to happen more often just because the bristles on electric toothbrushes tend to be shorter than the bristles on manual ones. This causes them to fray more quickly, so it needs to be replace more often. You may even want to consider switching it out earlier once you notice some wear and tear.
How Do You Make Your Toothbrush Last?
Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your toothbrush:
- Don’t store your toothbrush where it may make contact with other toothbrushes. This can spread bacteria.
- Rinse your toothbrush after you use it each time.
- Don’t share a toothbrush with anyone else, even if you are very close.
- Never keep your toothbrush in a closed container. This is the perfect environment for bacteria and mold to thrive.
- Never use soap, disinfectants, or mouthwash to clean your toothbrush.
To keep your oral health in excellent shape, it’s important that you use proper dental tools, like a new toothbrush. By replacing your toothbrush as needed and seeing your dentist for regular checkups, you will be well on your way towards keeping up with a healthy smile!
About the Author
After graduating from Georgetown College, Dr. Katherine Whitaker earned her dental doctorate from the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry. Currently, she is a proud member of the American Dental Association, Kentucky Dental Association, and the Southeastern Dental Society. To learn more about proper oral hygiene or to schedule an appointment at her office in Corbin, visit her website or call (606) 523-1415.