Is It Time to Replace Your Toothbrush?
Take a close look at your toothbrush? Especially if it has been a while. We use our toothbrushes twice a day and we never really look at them. A dirty, worn toothbrush does not do a good job keeping your teeth clean! Additionally, using your toothbrush past its useful period could end up causing your oral health more harm than good. Here are some tips to know if its time to replace your toothbrush from Summerfield Family Dentistry.
Lifespan of a Toothbrush
Toothbrushes do not have a published expiration date; however, they lose their effectiveness. The American Dental Association has determined that toothbrushes should be replaced:
- Every three to four months, or…
- As soon as the bristles become discolored or frayed, or…
- After you have recovered from a cold, the flu, or other contagious sicknesses.
Consequences of Using an Old Worn-Out Toothbrush
Continual use of an old worn-out toothbrush can:
- Allow plaque buildup: Studies show that frayed bristles leave behind a considerable amount of plaque and bacteria, even after brushing for the recommended two minutes.
- Damage to soft tissues: The bristles will begin to detach from the brush over time. If one becomes stuck between your teeth and gums, it could cause sores, irritation, or infection.
- Lead to bad breath: Using a toothbrush with old bristles can easily reintroduce previously removed plaque, bacteria, and food particles, leaving your mouth dirtier than before!
Choosing a Toothbrush – Tips
Traditional manual toothbrushes are a tried-and-true tool for cleaning your teeth. They are convenient, portable, and extremely easy to use. Look for an option with soft bristles, a manageable handle, and a head that can easily reach all your teeth.
Modern electric toothbrushes use self-rotating bristles to clean your teeth for you. They can include a variety of extra helpful features like brushing modes, sensors, and timers. Always choose a product with the American Dental Association’s Seal of Approval from a trusted brand. It is also important to remember that you will need to replace the bristled head just as often as a traditional toothbrush.
Regularly brushing your teeth is your number one defense against almost every oral health issue, so make sure you are doing it right! Keep your smile happy and healthy with a clean, new toothbrush every few months.
If you would like more information about toothbrushes and your dental health, please contact Summerfield Family Dentistry by calling 336-643-1440 to schedule a consultation appointment.