To keep good oral hygiene in your home, a lot will depend on the age of your toothbrush. Now, there are differing recommendations for how often you should change a manual brush but no matter which you go for, it is best to replace it with a quality product. We’re going to take a look at how often you need to give it before you use a brand new toothbrush, and what to look for in the better models so your smile will sparkle and your mouth is as healthy as possible.
So, How Long Does A Manual Toothbrush Last?
Generally, dentists recommend switching to a new toothbrush every 3 to 4 months. The exception to this is if you have been sick and use the toothbrush, replace your and your family’s toothbrushes to ensure they do not get sick.
How Often Do Kids Need to Change A Manual Toothbrush?
Because they use more force than adults, children often need to change their toothbrushes sooner than the 3 to the 4-month mark. Although this is still a good timeframe to stick to, keep an eye on the condition of the bristles.
How Can You Tell If A Toothbrush Needs To Be Replaced?
It can be easier to spot when a manual toothbrush needs replacing for those who brush hard. A frayed, or flat brush head will usually be a good indication that it is time to replace it with a new one. You shouldn’t wait until it gets almost unusable as you will not be getting proper use out of it.
Why Change A Manual Toothbrush?
As we already mentioned, illness is a common reason to change a toothbrush, and doing so can help stop the spread of infection across the family. If a guest uses your toothbrush by accident then this represents another time you should be switching it.
Besides keeping you free from illness, it is a good idea to change an old toothbrush because they are not as effective. When the bristles are not uninformed you aren’t getting as many strokes over your teeth so the brush itself isn’t doing its job in the way it should.
How To Maintain A Manual Toothbrush
Although you might rinse it under the tao for a couple of seconds when you have finished brushing, this is not the only thing you can do to prolong the lifespan of a toothbrush. To ensure you are keeping your oral hygiene to a high standard, be sure to clean it often.
After rinsing, store it upright so any excess saliva and water move down the brush, and the bristles can dry properly. When stored in a container, be sure to wash it out regularly. These can be a place where bacteria get to multiply so you will want to rinse it out every couple of days and give it a proper clean from time to time.
Keep Spare Brushes Around
You never know when you might have a guest so it is a good idea to have spares but for the people in your home, having spare toothbrushes means you don’t have to remember to pick one up next time you go to the store.
Also when someone is ill, you can throw the old one away knowing you can keep your new brush separate. Because of this, buying multipacks is always a good idea.
Why You Shouldn’t Keep Using An Old Toothbrush
Several factors cause the bristles on a toothbrush to weaken, notably the toothpaste itself and the abrasion from the brushing. Because of this, the bristles lose their shape and fray, otherwise known as bristle flaring.
Over time, this causes the brush to become less effective and this can result in the buildup of plaque and encourage the user to brush harder than they should, damaging the enamel.
Before too long you could experience the early signs of tooth decay and gum disease which would have been avoidable with a new manual toothbrush.
Can An Old Toothbrush Go Moldy?
This is one of the reasons to change an old toothbrush that should give some people a much-needed nudge in the right direction. Even with rinsing, an old toothbrush can be home to so much bacteria that mold can form on the bristles.
It might be subtle and when you apply a minty toothpaste it can disguise the smell and appearance. You might be ingesting mold and when it gets to this point, almost certainly fungus and bacteria.
What Makes A Good Manual Toothbrush?
Because you want to get the most out of your 3 or 4 months of use, a manual toothbrush has to tick certain boxes for it to be a good purchase. First of all, the bristles should not have any jagged ends, a straight cut is going to help you get the pearly whites you desire without the risk of damaging enamel.
The handle needs to be grippy and have a comfortable shape so it is easy to hold and move without slipping. Soft bristles are often the recommended type as they are less harsh on teeth than firm bristles. If this is too soft then use a medium bristled brush.
If you have a small mouth, the head needs to be on the small side so it can reach all the tight spaces behind the teeth and you can get as much coverage as possible.
Don’t Some Dentists Recommend Changing A Toothbrush More Often?
This might be true, and we have seen some dentists that recommend changing a toothbrush every two weeks. Usually, this is because some bristles start to become jagged at this early point but the majority of bristles are still fine for much longer.
Because this can be unmanageable and most experts recommend 3-4 months as a sensible time to change to a new manual toothbrush, it is best to stick to common sense. If at any point you notice your toothbrush is frayed and not as effective as it was, then this is a good indication that you should search for a new one.
How Long Should I Brush My Teeth For?
Although the answer varies depending on who you ask, the consensus is that you should brush for around 2 minutes, at least twice a day.
To maintain the best dental hygiene possible, rinse with mouthwash and remember to floss regularly. Snacks between meals should be kept to a minimum as this can impact oral hygiene between brushes.