Apart from keeping your teeth clean, it’s important to also keep your toothbrush clean.
You use your toothbrush to clean your mouth after waking up, after eating, and before bed. That said, it’s only fair for you to clean it properly after each use.
Having a hygienic toothbrush can reduce your chances of developing a variety of oral health conditions such as periodontal disease. After all, isn’t that one of the main reasons you brush to begin with?
Caring for Your Toothbrush
Taking after your toothbrush starts with you. Always wash your hands with warm water before and after you brush. You never know how many germs you picked up during the day.
After brushing, rinse the brush with warm water, and shake to remove excess water. Then, hang or keep your toothbrush in an upright position as this dries it faster. If you cover your toothbrush or place it in a container, be sure to wash the cover or container often to kill bacteria. Otherwise, you’re just placing your clean brush back into a bacteria-filled environment.
If you do cover your toothbrush, refrain from doing it often as it can cause a humid environment, especially if your home’s temperature is kept warm. Thus, this environment allows bacteria to thrive. Additionally, if you live in a house with many inhabitants, avoid placing your toothbrush in a holder. If you must, be sure to wash the holder often, and make sure the bristles don’t touch the bristles of another individual’s toothbrush.
Replace your toothbrush after every 3 to 4 months or whenever it looks worn. Remember, a fresh toothbrush removes plaques better than overused toothbrushes. Over time, old toothbrushes collect bacteria, blood, saliva, and hardened toothpaste. These materials can easily contaminate your toothbrush.
Avoid sharing toothbrushes, no matter how desperate you are. Exchange of bodily fluids from sharing toothbrushes could lead to infections, especially oral herpes. Never re-use any of the same disinfecting solutions or mouthwashes to disinfect your toothbrush because this can lead to cross-contamination.
Further Sterilizing Your Toothbrush
Deep clean your toothbrush every two weeks to a month.
Rinse your toothbrush under running hot water to kill bacteria. Then, soak the head in a solution of one part hydrogen peroxide (3 percent) and one part water for a minute. This helps to disperse stubborn debris on your brush’s bristles.
After cleaning, shake your brush vigorously to dry it as much as possible. Keep your clean brush in a well-ventilated area to avoid excess moisture that may otherwise promote bacterial growth.
Keeping your toothbrush, floss, tongue scrapers, and any other oral equipment you use for your oral care in proper, sterilized condition is vital. All in all, this will help you lead a more hygienic life.