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How Often Should I Replace My Toothbrush?

Electric Toothbrush

Good dental hygiene is essential for a healthy smile. Jordan Landing Smiles offers a variety of dental treatments to maintain that beautiful smile. The primary tool responsible for excellent oral care is the toothbrush, but unfortunately, we don’t always take care of it. 

This begs the question, how often should you change your toothbrush?

How Often Should You Replace Your Toothbrush?

Dentists and toothbrush manufacturing companies recommend you change your toothbrush approximately every three to four months. By this time, your brush has lost its structural integrity and doesn’t function as efficiently as before. The bristles tend to fray and soften. 

They may even get severely deformed with continued use. Such a brush can negatively affect your teeth, and you might notice food remains in your teeth even after brushing. Moreover, plaque and tartar formation increase by twice the proportion. In extreme cases, staying too long with an old toothbrush can cause you to get sick.

How Long Should You Use The Same Electric Toothbrush?

Electric toothbrushes have an average shelf-life of about three to five years. They are more durable and efficient compared to conventional toothbrushes. Electric toothbrushes are great at reaching tight spots and are better suited to managing cavities. Most companies even offer customers discounts, usually lasting up to two years.

How long your toothbrush lasts depends on how you care for it. With the proper care, you can extend its lifespan by a few months.

How Do You Know When Your Toothbrush Should Be Replaced?

The Bristles Are Deformed

A telltale sign indicating it’s time to replace your toothbrush is when the bristles begin to look deformed. You’ll note that they look bent out of shape and don’t efficiently brush away food particles.

You Notice Dirt And Deposits On The Bristles

You may begin to notice toothpaste and food deposits lodged at the base of the toothbrush head. This is a clear sign it needs replacing.

Other signs that indicate that your toothbrush should be replaced include the following.

  • You can’t recall the last time you had a new toothbrush.
  • Your toothbrush may have come into contact with another person’s toothbrush.
  • You’ve recently dropped your toothbrush.

What Is The Risk Of Using The Same Toothbrush For Long Periods

Bad Breath

Using the same toothbrush for months and even years can cause halitosis – the scientific name for bad breath.

Mold Growth

When you don’t let your toothbrush dry properly after use, it creates the perfect environment for mold growth. That’s why dentists recommend storing it somewhere dry.

Gum Injury

Frayed and deformed bristles mean you have to put in more effort to clean your teeth. This often leads to bruised gums and sometimes bleeding gums.

Plaque Buildup

A faulty toothbrush contributes to plaque buildup instead of getting rid of it. That’s because soft, deformed bristles are less efficient at cleaning teeth.

How Should You Care For Your Teeth?

Brush Twice A Day

Dentists recommend brushing two times a day, in the mornings and before you go to bed. However, many of us don’t follow through on the night-time routine. Surprisingly, brushing before bed eliminates most of the bacteria in the mouth, preventing tooth cavities and decay.

Use A Fluoride-Based Toothpaste

Fluoride strengthens enamel and prevents tooth decay and the formation of cavities. It also reduces the acidic action of bacteria found in the mouth. Toothpaste with fluoride promotes good oral hygiene by cleaning and protecting your teeth from plaque and tartar deposition.

Floss Everyday

Flossing can reduce cavity formation by a considerable amount. Brushing your teeth counts for half of the dental hygiene practices and is closely followed by flossing. The latter removes food residue that sometimes lies hidden between your teeth and gums. These deposits contribute to increased bacterial activity resulting in dental caries.

Remember To Brush Your Tongue

The tongue is often neglected during dental care. The organ hosts a large number of bacteria that cause bad breath and plaque formation. To prevent this, always brush your tongue to get rid of the harmful microorganisms.

Cut Back On Sugar Foods And Fizzy Drinks

Sugary foods and acidic substances such as citric fruit and sodas erode the enamel on your teeth, leading to cavity formation. Consuming these foods over extended periods provides food for bacteria responsible for plaque formation. So reducing their consumption can improve your teeth’ health by far.

Schedule Frequent Check-ups With Your Dentist

Make an effort to visit your dentist at least two times each year. Remember, brushing your teeth, flossing, regular dental visits, and other dental hygiene practices complement one another. These checkups are great for preventing and managing cavities and plaque. They’ll be able to spot other issues and provide solutions.

More on this topic:

When Should a Baby Start Going to the Dentist?

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