shutterstock_1028423407Your toothbrush is used at least twice per day, when you brush according to your dentist’s recommended guidelines, and is not built to last forever. As time goes by, the bristles will wear and brush less effectively, leaving your teeth vulnerable to plaque buildup and cavities. If you’re not sure how long you have been using your toothbrush, follow these guidelines to know when it’s time for a new one.

Signs You Need to Replace Your Toothbrush

A good rule of thumb to follow is to replace your toothbrush four times per year: once at your dental checkup every six months, and once between each visit. If you fall sick between visits, you should replace your toothbrush upon recovery to avoid getting sick again from any lodged bacteria in the brush. If you haven’t been sick, keep an eye on the bristles on your toothbrush. As the brush ages, the bristles will no longer stay in place, fraying more and more after each use. Frayed bristles will not be able to get all of the plaque and residue left over throughout the day, which can lead to cavities if left unattended.

Finding a Replacement Toothbrush

When searching for a replacement toothbrush, make sure you choose one that is marked with the ADA Seal of Approval for the best clean. Depending on what feels the most comfortable and natural to you, you will have the option between an electric or manual toothbrush. If you are consistently on the go, a manual toothbrush may be right for you. It can be easily transported without taking up too much room in your bag or pocket. If you prefer to leave your toothbrush at home, an electric toothbrush comes with a charging stand and often has sensors to make sure you are brushing each part of your mouth for the correct length of time and avoiding gum damage by pressing too hard. An electric toothbrush will be able to access the space between each tooth more thoroughly than a manual toothbrush.

Dental Cleanings & Checkups in Boston & Newton

When you change your toothbrush, it is recommended that you rinse it thoroughly after each use to wash away toothpaste residue and bacteria before storing it in an upright position to allow it to air dry before the next use. To schedule a checkup and cleaning for your teeth, as well as to go over best brushing techniques, contact Newton Dental Associates today by calling 617-965-0060 or filling out our online contact form.