Toothbrush Health – When Should You Change?

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Whilst you may be brushing twice a day, you won’t be getting the full benefits of proper oral care if your toothbrush is worn out. Do both your teeth and gums a favour, and take the time to learn when it’s best to change your toothbrush.

How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush?

It’s recommended that you change your toothbrush every 3-4 months. Whilst this is a general recommendation, some individual factors may require you to do so more often. For example, if you have braces, then you may find that the bristles of your toothbrush become frayed more quickly, and will, therefore, need replacing more often. Children’s toothbrushes will also need to be replaced more often than adults toothbrushes.

In some circumstances, you should replace your toothbrush if the bristles aren’t visibly frayed. If you’ve been sick with the flu or a cold, or have had a mouth or throat infection, then you should change your toothbrush even if it’s new. Doing this will help to prevent re-exposing yourself or others to germs that could spread illnesses.

Choosing The Toothbrush That’s Right For You

It can be tricky to find the right toothbrush that’s a good fit for you, due to a great deal of choice available. Here are a few factors you should consider:

Bristles – Unless otherwise recommended by your dentist, then you should choose a toothbrush medium toothbrush. Never hard bristles as this can be damaging.

Size – Your toothbrush head should allow you to easily access all areas of your mouth, especially those easy-to-miss places like your rear gum line and behind your molars. This is usually a lot easier with a smaller toothbrush head.

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Manual Vs Electric – All three of our hygienists here at Dental Solutions recommend an electric toothbrush over a regular brush. Typically, an electric toothbrush is more effective at cleaning away plaque and food debris. And many have a pressure sensor to alert you if you are pressing too hard to avoid toothbrush abrasion and receding gums. Some electric toothbrushes even have an automatic 2-minute timer so that you’re making sure you are brushing for the recommended amount of time. Here at the practice, we suggest buying an Oral B Pro2000 model or upwards.

Extending The Life of Your Toothbrush

There are a few things you can do to help your toothbrush last a little longer:

  • Rinse your toothbrush vigorously under cold water after you use it to remove any excess debris and toothpaste.
  • Store your toothbrush upright in the open, and not touching one another, so that they have a chance to dry in between uses.
  • Never share your toothbrush
  • When travelling, use a plastic case to protect your bristles.

By following these simple steps, you can make sure that you and your family are getting the most from your at-home dental routine. By properly caring for and changing your toothbrush every few months, you can benefit from proper dental care. Make it easy by setting a reminder to check your toothbrush every month, and then get ready to receive praise from your dentist for taking great care of your teeth!

Technique

One important thing to note is that apart from the importance of the type of toothbrush you use and how you care for it, the way you use your brush also matters. Proper toothbrush technique includes always angling the bristles 45 degrees towards the gums and allow the bristles to gently massage gums while brushing. If you are using an electric toothbrush, then it’s best to hold it over the tooth and let it do the hard work. While if you prefer a regular toothbrush then you should remember to use small, circular movements and don’t scrub.

It is also important to remember that no toothbrush, no matter how good it is, cleans the spaces between your teeth. As such, cleaning interdentally with either floss or interdental brushes is just as important for your overall dental hygiene. For optimal gum and dental health, we recommend an appointment with our hygienists to help learn proper brushing and interdental cleaning techniques.

Of course, part of having a good dental routine – other than a healthy toothbrush – is a regular visit to the dentist. To book an appointment with our dedicated team here at Dental Solutions, simply contact us today or call on 01925 756565.

 


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