Posted .

You take care of brushing and flossing every day–but do you take care of your toothbrush? Your brushing will only be effective if you have effective tools. Here are some tips for taking care of your toothbrush.

First, make sure your toothbrush is only used for your own teeth. Sharing toothbrushes is damaging to your oral health, as it spreads bacteria, disease, and infections. Make sure you avoid these things by using your own toothbrush.

Second, as you store your toothbrush, make sure it is not around other toothbrushes. If you need to store it around other toothbrushes, make sure the heads don’t touch, to avoid cross-contamination. Cross-contamination spreads bacteria between brushes. Additionally, don’t store your toothbrush in a closed-off area. Closed spaces encourage bacterial growth, which shortens the life of the toothbrush.

Third, replace your toothbrush often. Even without contamination, your toothbrush needs to be replaced every 3-4 months–sooner, if the bristles look worn or frayed. This will help ensure your teeth get as clean as they need to to help avoid tooth decay, cavities, and other oral emergencies. When you replace your toothbrush, buy one with the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance. This will guarantee you a quality product that has been rigorously tested for both safety and effectiveness.

Finally, support your tooth brushing habit with regular visits to the dentist. This will help catch problems early, correct any bad habits, and get your teeth as clean as they can be! If you are in the Lexington, Kentucky area, be sure to call Smith & Stahr, P.S.C. at 859.278.9391 to schedule your next appointment! Dr. David Smith and our team will help keep your smile healthy and bright!