Your toothbrush helps to keep you clean and healthy, so why not return the favor? Here are some guidelines for caring for your toothbrush:
1. Sole ownership.
This is one instance where you should NOT share. Recent research shows that cavities are contagious. By sharing a toothbrush, you could also be sharing cavity-causing bacteria.
2. A little privacy, please.
To avoid swapping harmful bacteria, make sure stored brushes aren’t touching each other.
3. Give it some space.
When not in use, your toothbrush should be kept in a clean, well-ventilated spot as far away from the toilet as possible. Keeping your toothbrush in a closed, moist space can encourage the growth of germs.
4. Give it a shower.
Before and after each use, rinse your toothbrush under running water to eliminate excess residue. You can even rub the bristles gently with a clean finger. Shake out the toothbrush to help accelerate drying.
5. Take a bath.
Bacteria can be reduced even further by soaking your toothbrush in an anti-bacterial mouthwash after each use.
6. Cut ties.
Swap your toothbrush out every 3 months, or even sooner if the bristles are splayed. If you’ve recently been sick with a cold or flu, opt for a new, germ-free toothbrush.
7. Be skeptical.
According to the American Dental Association, there is no evidence that the products that claim to sanitize your toothbrush actually work.