How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush

How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush
Posted on 10/23/2019
How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush

On average, most Americans only change their toothbrush 1.9 times per year. But for good oral health, the American Dental Association recommends that you change your toothbrush at least four times per year, which would be approximately every three months. If you find that the bristles of your brush start flaring out or fray before three months, then you are probably using too much pressure when brushing your teeth. 

At West Gate Dental, a Lincoln Dentist, we want to share important information with you that will help you maintain good oral health. Following is an overview of when to change your toothbrush, why your toothbrush should be changed every three months, and how to keep it germ-free.




Toothbrush Indicators

Nowadays, most toothbrushes come with indicators that let you know it is time to change your toothbrush. The indicators usually consist of a few rows of blue bristles, when the blue color fades then it is time to change your brush. As you brush your teeth over time, the blue bristles start to get thinner and then eventually the blue color is worn away. 

Most electric toothbrushes also come with brush indicators that let you know when it is time to change the brush head, but it works differently than a manual brush. The replacement indicator on an electric toothbrush typically works based on the number of oscillations, or how many times the brush spins. Once your toothbrush reaches a predetermined number of oscillations, it sends a signal that produces a light. Once that light comes on, it is time to change the toothbrush head.

Why You Should Change Your Toothbrush

When you use the same toothbrush or brush head for a long time, the bristles start to fray and wear out, leaving you with a brush that is ineffective for good oral health. Changing your brush as recommended will:

  • Remove up to 30 percent more plaque than an older brush
  • Protect gum tissue from being damaged by the frayed bristles 
  • Help reduce the chances that your toothbrush becomes a breeding ground for bacteria

Protecting Your Toothbrush from Germs

Thousands of microbes can grow on the brush bristles that can cause flu viruses, cold sores, staphylococcus bacteria, which causes ear, nose and throat infection, and the Candida microbe that causes thrush. To protect your toothbrush from germs, you should:

  • Store your brush vertically in a dry, open area so that it dries completely
  • Keep your brush separate from other brushes to avoid cross-contamination
  • Rinse your brush thoroughly after use in warm water because hot water will shorten the life of the brush bristles 

Contact Your Lincoln Dentist Today

In addition to top-notch dental care, we work to provide our patients with important information for good oral health. Our blog is filled with good articles to keep you and your family informed on maintaining oral health.

As a leading Lincoln dentist, we stand ready to care for all of your dental needs. Contact us to schedule an appointment or to ask any questions you may have. You can also schedule an online appointment.