If you had to give up your toothbrush or your car, which would it be? According to a recent survey, 42 percent of adults and 34 percent of teens would rather turn in their keys, computer, cell phone, or microwave than get rid of their toothbrushes. It seems that many people love toothbrushes the way your Seattle dentist Dr. Dan McKay does. McKay Center for Cosmetic and General Dentistry would like to take this opportunity to celebrate the history of the toothbrush and discuss choosing the one that’s right for you.
Toothbrushes are Older than What?!
Did you know that toothbrushes were invented before soap, deodorant, and even toilets? The idea of the toothbrush is over 5,000 years old, although back then they were a lot different than what we have now. In ancient times, people used sticks, bones, and all manner of animal hair and products to brush their teeth and take care of their gums. The switch from animal hair to synthetic materials (for bristles) is fairly new, and the mass production of toothbrushes has only existed for a couple of centuries.
Today, you can find a toothbrush just about anywhere. In fact, there are so many different kinds of dental products that picking the right one can be an overwhelming task. Between sonic toothbrushes, manual, soft or medium bristles, tongue-cleaning attachments, specialized grips, bristle configurations, gum stimulators, and the dozens of brands available, buying a toothbrush is not as simple as it used to be. How do you know what to get? Call us! Our team loves to help patients make the choices that best suit their individual needs.
Protect Your Smile by Protecting Your Toothbrush
Once you have the perfect toothbrush, do you know that where you store it makes a big difference in keeping it clean? Bathrooms serve many purposes, but most of them don’t preserve the integrity of your toothbrush. To protect yourself from nasty germs, keep at least six feet of distance between the toilet and your toothbrush and close the lid before you flush. Also, make sure to use a toothbrush holder that does not collect standing water or crusty, leftover toothpaste, and put a reasonable distance between your toothbrush and other items. Finally, replace your toothbrush every three months or immediately following an illness.
The best way to use your toothbrush? Brush for 2-3 minutes at least twice a day, making sure to cover the surface of the tooth, as well as the backs, edges, and corners, and brush the tongue. It is estimated that 38 days of the average American’s life is spent using a toothbrush and the U.S. spends nearly $800 million on them each year. Dr. McKay wants everyone to enjoy the excellent dental health that comes from true toothbrush love, so contact us today with any questions or to schedule an appointment!
The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.