Your toothbrush looks a little sad. The ends are frayed and sticking out, it looks a little faded and used. Should I pick one up at the store or order one on Amazon? I’ll just get new one when I get my cleaning. It’s probably okay. Sound familiar? What’s the worst that could happen from using an old toothbrush anyway, right?
As we know, a healthy mouth starts with having good a dental habits. Part of a good dental routine is making sure you change your toothbrush every three months because believe it or not, using an old toothbrush can negatively affect your oral health. From causing sickness to damaging your gums, an old toothbrush could be your mouth’s downfall.
Your toothbrush is constantly exposed to water and the bacteria that is found in your mouth. It makes sense then that bacteria are transferred onto your toothbrush and establish colonies thanks to the wet environment, which allows the bacteria to thrive. That’s the same bacteria that causes cavities. With bacteria living on your brush, it can be continually transferred back to your mouth instead of being rinsed out each night.
Reintroducing bacteria into your mouth on a daily basis can cause damage to your teeth and oral health by causing infections or tooth decay. Replacing your toothbrush every three months can help ensure you are not introducing harmful bacteria into your mouth on a regular basis.
Using your toothbrush twice a day for three months can quickly wear down its bristles. A frayed toothbrush cannot stand up to the cleaning power of a new brush because its bristles aren’t as sturdy. When the bristles of a toothbrush wear down, they cannot reach into crevices as well to clean the bacteria and plaque off of your teeth. It’s best to keep a toothbrush that is in good condition so you clean your teeth as effectively as possible.
Three months is longer than you may think. In that time, several sicknesses can come and go. While it is best to dispose of your toothbrush right after you recover from an illness, taking the extra precaution of disposing of your toothbrush every three months can help ensure you stay healthy. Bacteria and viruses can live for variable amounts of time including a few hours to several months according to National Health Services.