Thursday, June 25, 2015

Tips for Proper Toothbrush Hygiene

10 billion

That’s how many microbes can be living on your toothbrush at any given time. The types of bacteria can range anywhere from the bacteria in the mouth that causes tooth decay and gum disease, to strep bacteria to E. coli. Here are a few tips to help keep you and your mouth healthy:
  1. Keep your toothbrush at least 6 feet from your toilet. Because most people store their brushes in the bathroom, it’s easy for them to become infested with fecal matter and other microbes you wouldn’t want in your mouth. Best idea is to keep it in an encloses cupboard.
  2. Toothbrushes should be stored vertically and independently, this will prevent water and bacteria from accumulating. Also making sure no two toothbrush heads are touching, this prevents the spread and cross contamination of bacteria between family members.
  3. Allow your tooth brush to air dry between uses. Keeping your toothbrush in an enclosed plastic case can create the perfect breeding ground for bacterial multiplication.
  4. Replace your toothbrush about every 3 to 4 months (and yes that also means electric brush heads), when it shows signs of wear and when you have had a cold.
  5. NO SHARING your toothbrush with ANYONE. Toothbrush sharing can transfer saliva and bacteria, even the kind that cause gum disease and tooth decay. Tooth decay is considered an infectious disease... one more reason not to share or borrow a toothbrush.

Sara Agnew

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