Dental Tips Blog


4 Uses for Old Toothbrushes

Posted in Fillings

Regular brushing with a fresh toothbrush is part of a good oral hygiene routine that will help prevent tooth decay and reduce the need for dental fillings, crowns, and other tooth restorations. Most dentists recommend replacing your toothbrush every three to four months or sooner if the bristles have become frayed or if you have been sick.   Before you throw that old toothbrush away, why don’t you see if you can put your brush to use in one of these areas?

  1. Scrubbing Tile Grout

There’s nothing like a toothbrush to loosen grime trapped between tiles or even around the sink faucet. It’s especially effective when used with a cleaning solution of baking soda and vinegar.

  1. Cleaning Jewelry

Toothbrush bristles are the ideal way to add some shine to your jewelry. Their small size makes them perfect for scrubbing the hard-to-reach inside of rings where dirt can accumulate. Use a jewelry cleaning chemical to treat your favorite treasures and then loosen debris with your old brush.

  1. Pre-Treating Stains On Clothes

Need a way to dab just a little pre-treat laundry soap on your favorite blouse? Your old toothbrush makes the perfect applicator. It’s also good for scrubbing out isolated stains.

  1. Unclogging Filters

Lots of household appliances come with filters that you probably overlook more often than not. A good cleaning will keep your refrigerator or clothes dryer running smoothly. A toothbrush can not only nab gunk stuck in the screen of the filter, but it’s perfect for reaching the angles at the corners of the filter.

Naturally, you can’t retire your toothbrush without having another at the ready to take its place. Use this opportunity to find a brush you’ll love even more. Schedule a dental appointment and ask your dentist for some tips on selecting a new toothbrush that suits your smile care needs.

Posted on behalf of:
The Newport Beach Dentist
1901 Westcliff Drive #6
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 646-2481


3 Things to Look for in Your Next Toothbrush

Whether you are seeking a manual or powered (electric) toothbrush, the most important aspect to pay attention to is the head and bristles of the toothbrush. Additionally, a toothbrush bearing the seal of the American Dental Association (ADA) is approved as being safe and effective, so it is recommended that you watch for that seal. There are three other specific factors you should look for, as well:

The softest bristles possible – bristles that are too firm (especially when used by someone who brushes aggressively) can cause wear on the teeth and irritation to the gums. Nice and gentle does the job!

A brush head size that is not too big, allowing for easy access to back teeth and inside surfaces. Adults really don’t need a brush head that is much longer than an inch.

A handle that is comfortable to hold and maneuver for the most thorough cleaning ability. Individuals with arthritis or other condition affecting their motor skills may feel better using a brush with a wider handle.

The right kind of toothbrush matters more than you may realize. If the head of the toothbrush is not the right size, or if the bristles are old and splayed, then you could be missing spots while you brush. If these spots are missed time and again, then the plaque buildup will start to cause problems for the teeth and gums.

In the end, the best toothbrush is the one you will use! Shop around and experiment, and ask your dentist for suggestions on selecting a toothbrush that will best suit your needs. Happy brushing!

Posted on behalf of:
139 Aliant Pkwy
Alexander City, AL 35010
(256) 329-8401


When to Change Out Your Toothbrush

Posted in Periodontics

You use your toothbrush at least a couple of times every day. It sits on your bathroom counter and then goes right into your mouth. Keeping it clean and dry helps prevent bacteria from harboring within the bristles, but there are still some times when you should immediately change your toothbrush out.

If you’ve had an illness or viral infection such as strep throat or the flu, you need to toss your toothbrush. Most doctors recommend throwing your toothbrush away 24 hours after beginning an antibiotic treatment. It may be in your best interest to use a cheap, disposable toothbrush between that time and when you are completely recovered from your illness to throw away again, before you to back to using a high quality toothbrush or get a new electric toothbrush head. This prevents you from repeatedly buying new, high-end toothbrushes, especially if you have a recurrent illness.

When toothbrush bristles begin to splay out, it’s time to toss it. The additional wear and tear of the bristles can cause microscopic abrasions on your gums and tooth enamel, contributing to abrasion and gum recession which could require gum grafting to correct. Also make sure you’re not brushing too hard. Even if you’re brushing like you should, with soft pressure and a soft bristled toothbrush, you shouldn’t be getting visible bristle splaying for a 2-3 months, if at all. Splayed bristles within a week of use are typically a signal that you’re brushing too hard; they can damage your teeth.

The longest you should use your toothbrush is sometime around 3-6 months. Electric (and some manual) toothbrush heads may offer a visible color or line on the bristles that disappear when they are due to be changed out.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Virginia Kirkland, North Point Periodontics


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