It’s common knowledge that toothbrushes don’t last forever. However, it’s likely not something you think about regularly. Changing out your toothbrush and taking care of it is an important step in maintaining your oral health, so here’s what to know about it.

When To Change Your Toothbrush

Remember that the first line of defense against mouth bacteria is your toothbrush. Bacteria in the mouth leads to:

  • Tooth decay
  • Bad breath
  • Gum disease

You should use a brush with an easy-to-grip handle and straight bristles. Always choose a soft toothbrush that will comfortably get rid of bacteria and food that collects in the areas where the gums meet your teeth.

Brush at least two times per day and spend two minutes brushing during each session. If you have a particularly sugary snack throughout the day, then consider hopping into the bathroom for a quick brush.

How long should you wait to replace your toothbrush? Typically, it’s best to replace it every three to four months. Of course, replace it sooner if you notice that the bristles are falling out, are getting frayed, or seem like they’re collecting grime.

Should I Use An Electric Toothbrush?

An electric toothbrush needs to be replaced periodically. The heads are usually made with nylon bristles which have a tendency to fray over time. You should consider replacing these bristles once every three months. Keep a close eye on whether your bristles are fraying earlier, and don’t keep brushing with an electric toothbrush that isn’t cleaning your teeth properly.

Additional Reasons To Replace a Toothbrush

Have you or someone else in the family been sick recently? If so, it’s wise to replace all the toothbrushes in the home. This is because germs and bacteria can accumulate on them. It’s especially important to replace all brushes if someone had a bacterial or viral infection.

Your child’s toothbrush probably needs to be replaced more often than an adult’s brush. Children have a tendency to drop their brushes more often or simply not pay attention to cleanliness. They can also gnaw at the brushes, causing them to wear out faster.

You should also throw out your toothbrush and replace it if someone else uses it. You never know if you’re exposing yourself to more bacteria and it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Caring For Your Toothbrush

Here are pointers for taking care of a toothbrush:

  • Don’t allow brush heads to touch if they’re stored together inside a cup
  • Don’t share a toothbrush with other people
  • Be wary of placing your toothbrush in an airtight container between brushing sessions. This makes a good environment for mold growth.
  • Use water to rinse your toothbrush completely before you store it

Visit Your Dentist Often

Getting your teeth professionally cleaned regularly is an important part of dental hygiene. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Khan, we invite you to contact our Berlin office by calling or filling out our online form.