How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush?

Nothing lasts forever. And it’s fairly safe to say that your toothbrush won’t either. 

The soft bristles are subject to wear and tear and eventually won’t be as effective at keeping your teeth and gums healthy. An old toothbrush can also be a breeding ground for bacteria and in some circumstances should be changed more often. 

So it’s important for your dental health to find out how often you should change your toothbrush.

How often should you change your toothbrush?

A toothbrush should be used at least twice a day. Over time you will end up with frayed bristles. So when should you throw away the old toothbrush and replace it with a new one?

Most dental professionals (including the American Dental Association (ADA)) recommend that you should replace your manual toothbrush every 12-16 weeks.

Leaving it longer than 16 weeks can negatively affect your oral health and leave your mouth open to bacteria and infection.

If you use an electric toothbrush, then you may need to replace the toothbrush head sooner. Electric toothbrush heads are under greater forces than manual toothbrushes as the nylon bristles spin to clean your teeth.

There are circumstances when you need to change your toothbrush sooner. For example, if you or a family member has had a bacterial or viral infection, such as strep throat, changing all the toothbrushes or brush heads in the house will help you or others to avoid getting sick. 

You should also get a new toothbrush if someone has used yours accidentally. This will avoid the spreading of germs.

You may also wish to replace your toothbrush sooner if it’s beginning to look worn out and the bristles have lost their stiffness

How to maintain your toothbrush

Every day you put your toothbrush inside your mouth. This is why it’s important that you clean and maintain your toothbrush properly in order to protect your oral health.

After brushing your teeth, rinse the toothbrush head thoroughly with tap water. Let it air dry in an upright position. 

If the brush is together with other toothbrushes, don’t allow the brush heads or bristles to touch one another.

You can also store your brush head in a closed container, although storing a moist toothbrush in a closed or moist environment could allow mold to grow or bacteria to spread. So let it dry in the open air first.

What happens if you don’t change your toothbrush?

Over time, toothbrush bristles will become worn out, known as bristle flaring. This happens as a result of the combined water, toothpaste, and brushing motion you use to clean teeth.

New toothbrushes, then, are the most effective at preventing cavities, removing plaque build-up, and tackling bad breath by removing food and bacteria that have collected along the gum line. 

A new toothbrush will keep your teeth clean and protect against tooth decay and gum disease.

If You Have Dental Problems

Changing your toothbrush and using it regularly will help you maintain good dental hygiene and help you to avoid many problems, such as tooth cavities or advanced gum disease. Neglecting these basics can lead to tooth loss. 

If you already have missing teeth and you would like to replace them, then the surgeons at Stanislaus Oral Surgery and Implantology can help with your dental surgery needs. 

Conveniently located in Modesto, CA, Stanislaus Oral Surgery serves throughout the surrounding area. Their services include full mouth extractions and dental implants. Book now online for your appointment.

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