Do you have frequent colds? You may be wondering whether you should replace your toothbrush after you’ve recovered. While you may think this makes perfect sense, the best dentist in Fort Pierce confirms you don’t have to toss out your toothbrush after you’ve had strep throat, a common cold, or flu.
Although your toothbrush may harbor germs, it won’t reinfect you with the same germs that caused your illness. Unless your immune system is severely compromised, it automatically produces specific antibodies each time you get sick to fight off those infection-causing germs. Even after your period of recovery, these antibodies remain on hand to protect you from reinfection.
To help you keep your toothbrush as germ-free as possible, we’ve pulled together these general recommendations issued by the American Dental Association (ADA):
It’s never a good idea to share your toothbrush or toothpaste. Eliminate the risk of cross-contamination by giving everyone in your household their own toothbrush and toothpaste.
After brushing your teeth, don’t forget to get rid of excess toothpaste and food particles that may have clung to your toothbrush by rinsing it under cold running water.
Attempting to disinfect your toothbrush by soaking it in mouthwash or other disinfecting solutions will do you more harm than good. Using the solution for too long or having multiple people use the same solution will only lead to cross-contamination.
Don’t forget to let your toothbrush air-dry after you rinse it by storing it upright in a holder. Keep in mind that bacteria thrive in moist environments. For this reason, don’t cover your toothbrush or store it in a closed container.
When it comes to changing your toothbrush, a good rule of thumb would be every three to four months or as soon as you notice that the bristles are starting to look frayed.
At Smooth Sailing Dental, we’re here to help you achieve and maintain a beautiful and healthy smile. Contact us today to set up an appointment.