How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush?
Brushing your teeth has been ingrained to our system from waking up in the morning and right before sleep. Research shows that brushing can prevent cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. But just as important as brushing, it is also essential to make sure that you’re equipped with the proper tools. Having the right toothbrush makes a significant change in your oral health.
Types of Brushes
Toothbrushes have evolved in various shapes and sizes and has remained part of the daily human activity in maintaining oral hygiene. Today, there are manual brushes and Electric brush used for brushing.
The first bristle toothbrush was invented in 1948 in China which was taken from the back of a hog’s neck. From then on, various configurations of manual toothbrushes have been sold in the market. Currently, manual toothbrushes consist of plastic handle and nylon bristles attached to its head.
In 1960 when electric toothbrushes were introduced in the market, it consists of two rows of bristles constantly moving in a reversing direction against the teeth.
Microorganisms from the environment can be stored in toothbrushes after brushing the teeth. The American Dental Association (ADA) provides the consumers several tips for toothbrush care. Consumers are recommended to do the following:
- Don’t share toothbrushes.
- Thoroughly rinse the toothbrush with tap water after use to remove any toothpaste and debris.
- Store the toothbrush in an upright position if possible and allow it to air-dry. When storing more than one brush, keep them separated so that germs are not transferred from one brush to another.
Replace brushes every 3 to 4 months or check the bristles is they are frayed. Some people brush vigorously and cause their brushes to become easily worn out. Note that worn out bristles become less effective in removing plaque from your teeth. In selecting toothbrushes, ensure that the bristles do not have sharp or jagged edges as it could damage the gums. It suggested to look for toothbrush brands with the ADA Seal. The Seal ensures you that the product has been evaluated by the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs on safety and efficacy.
Preference for toothbrushes may vary between kids and adults. Studies have shown that there is no statistical difference between manual and electric brushes. Kids are advised to use soft bristles for gentle cleaning and those that can easily fit in the mouth while adults can choose from a variety of textures. However, those with limited mobility or dexterity may opt for electric brushes. In case you are undecided of which toothbrush to use, consult your dentist for advice.
As a primary tool for good oral care, it is important that consumers make it a habit to observe the proper care and maintenance of toothbrushes and other dental tools because dental health goes beyond those radiant smile. It could improve your body’s overall health as it also prevents other possible life-threatening diseases.