Most of us are pretty conscious of our health and do what we can to avoid jeopardizing it. From eating well, to working out, to washing our hands regularly, it’s almost second nature to stay on top of your health game. We wash our hands after using the bathroom and clean our kitchen counters, and most of us would never dream of eating a meal that had been sitting out in our bathroom for a few hours. But have you ever considered that every time you brush your teeth, that’s not far off from what you’re doing? Our bathrooms are hotbeds for bacteria, and it’s important to store and treat your toothbrush properly to avoid exposing yourself to any harmful substances.
Keep a safe distance.
Every time you flush the toilet, water and bacteria can spray up to three feet from the bowl! For reasons that don’t need to be spelled out, it’s important to keep your toothbrush a safe distance away from your toilet and to try to flush with the lid closed when possible. If you’re working with a tight space, consider investing in specially designed hooks for the wall next to your sink. Placing your toothbrush higher will bring it away from both the toilet and any splashing water that may occur when hands are being washed.
Air flow is key.
While it may seem like a good idea to lock your toothbrush away in a cabinet or drawer to avoid exposure to the elements, this can actually cause more trouble than it’s worth. Your toothbrush needs to dry thoroughly between uses and good airflow is crucial to that. When toothbrushes are placed in cabinets, drawers, or inside plastic covers, the bristles remain moist and bacteria can flourish. Remember to store your toothbrush in the open on a counter, shelf, or attached to the wall.
Replacements are necessary.
In addition to storing your toothbrush properly, it’s important to remember to replace the brush itself every 90 days or so. Doing this both helps to ensure you’re using a brush with fresh bristles, but it also helps start over with a clean slate free from any built-up material or bacteria. Avoid the old tricks like boiling your toothbrush or putting it through the dishwasher, as this can warp the plastic and bristles and render your toothbrush less useful. It’s best just to invest in a brand-new brush every time you notice yours is starting to wear. If you’d like to sanitize your toothbrush head between replacements, allow it to soak in mouthwash for a few minutes.
With flu season approaching, it’s more important than ever to do what we can to keep ourselves healthy and bacteria out of our mouths and bodies. A few small changes in how you treat your toothbrush will help to ensure you’re doing your best to keep your mouth clean!
If you have questions about the best ways to treat your toothbrush, or if you’d simply like to schedule a routine checkup with your dentist, give us a call at Caputo Dental in Naperville today!