How Often Do You Have to Replace Your Toothbrush?

Woman brushing her teeth

Good dental hygiene starts with regular brushing of teeth for at least twice a day, but most people are unaware that they are not meant to use toothbrushes for a very long time.

The American Dental Association (ADA) said that it is necessary to replace your toothbrush every three months, although it could be earlier for some people. If you brush your teeth after waking up and before going to bed, this three-month rule applies to you.

Brushing Habits

Those who brush their teeth less often may replace their toothbrush after using it for more than three months. However, this cost-saving practice already increases your chances of having cavities later on. Further problems such as gum disease and tooth loss may arise in the future if you fail to see a dentist for cavity treatment.

If you live in Washington, a dentist in Sequim, WA, will say the same about the need for regularly replacing your toothbrush. Aside from maintaining healthy teeth, another reason to replace your brush involves the presence of bacteria build-up in your brush over time.

Toothbrush Types

The constant formation of plaque in our mouths is a good enough reason for regular brushing, according to ADA spokesperson Maria Lopez Howell. Whether you use a manual or electric toothbrush, research suggested that the latter only has a slight advantage.

A 2014 study showed that the use of an electric toothbrush for up to three months removed 11% more plaque than manual brushes. Beyond that time, the reduction of plaque increased to 21%. Electric brushes also reduced gingivitis by 6% between one and three months of using them.

The money you save by not replacing your brush more often pales in comparison to the amount you spend on dental treatment, which may arise from poor dental habits.