As a child, you may have been told that you need to replace your toothbrush every few months or so. You might not have any idea where this magical number came from or why replacing your toothbrush is of any value to your dental health.
The truth is this: replacing your toothbrush is essential. It keeps your dental hygiene in good shape and ensures that you are not missing any spots in your mouth. Still unsure? Here's what you need to know about replacing your toothbrush.
Old Toothbrushes Are Covered in Bacteria
Your toothbrush is constantly exposed to bacteria, both from your mouth and from the environment. Over time, these bacteria can build up on the bristles of your toothbrush and can eventually lead to infections.
Replacing your toothbrush regularly helps to prevent this build-up of bacteria and can keep your mouth healthy. If you let this bacteria sit, you continue to expose yourself to it.
Worn-Out Toothbrushes Are Less Effective
As your toothbrush ages, the bristles will begin to wear down. This can make it harder to remove plaque and bacteria from your teeth, which can lead to cavities and other dental problems.
Replacing your toothbrush every few months ensures that you're always using a brush with fresh, effective bristles. Plus, you have the opportunity to replace hard bristles with soft ones, which may be better for your gums.
You May Need to Replace Your Toothbrush More Often Than You Think
If you have a chronic illness, such as diabetes, you may need to replace your toothbrush more often than the average person. This is because chronic illnesses can weaken your immune system, making you more susceptible to infection.
Additionally, if you've been sick recently, you may need to replace your toothbrush as well. This is because the germs from your illness can stay on your toothbrush and make you sick again.
Plus, you might simply want to make sure that your teeth are as clean as they possibly can be. It's completely fine to decide that you want to toss your toothbrush every two or three months, for instance.
Talk to Your Dentist About Taking Care of Your Teeth
If you're unsure about how often you should be replacing your toothbrush or if you have concerns about your dental health, make an appointment with your dentist. They'll be able to give you personalized advice on how to take care of your teeth.