During cold and flu season, germs are everywhere. It’s nearly impossible to avoid becoming ill at least once in awhile, but you can still do your best to avoid danger from ordinary household items. If not cared for properly, one of the worst culprits can be your toothbrush! The Placerville Dental Group proposes starting the new year off right with a fresh toothbrush! And here are some tips to keep that new toothbrush clean and fresh.
How to Keep a Toothbrush Clean
It should go without saying, but we will say it anyway: Never share your toothbrush, not even with your family members. Everyone in your house should have their own toothbrush to avoid exchanging germs, viruses and bacteria. Each of us have our own microorganisms that are not meant to be shared, yet switching toothbrushes is a sure way to give bacteria new breeding grounds.
Keep your hands clean to have a cleaner toothbrush. Wash your hands often, and especially before eating or after using the restroom. When you arrive home, protect your household by washing your hands shortly after you arrive. Naturally, you should always wash your hands before you brush!
Rinse your brush thoroughly after each use. A clean and rinsed brush has less bacteria and fewer particles from food and toothpaste for bacteria to feed on.
Clean and dry is key. Bacteria thrive in moisture, so a dried out toothbrush is best. After rinsing it, store your brush upright, like in a toothbrush holder, so it has a chance to dry out completely. When your toothbrush is allowed to “breathe” this puts the brakes on the oral bacteria party from getting out of control and limits bacteria being redeposited in your mouth. You may use a UV sanitizer is if you wish, but make sure to keep it clean, or even its UV rays might not get the job done right.
Replace your brush every three months or whenever needed. For example, replace your brush after recovering from an illness, if you drop it on the floor or in the toilet, or if someone else used it. When the bristles on your brush are bent or frayed, that’s a sign you need a fresh toothbrush. Bent and frayed bristles do a poor job of brushing off plaque and cleaning teeth and gums.
Our Placerville dentists also want to remind our patients to not miss miss any dental appointments. Remember that every time you come, you can always get a new toothbrush! So resolve to make 2017 your best dental year ever by getting back to the basics — brush at least twice a day, floss every day and visit us for your exam and cleaning twice this year! Plus, keep your toothbrush clean!