Regularly replacing a toothbrush is essential for your oral health. Toothbrushes build up with old food and plaque and become breeding grounds for bacteria growth. The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests that a traditional and electric toothbrush should be changed every three months or after being sick.

Worn Out

Usually, around the three-month mark, a toothbrush’s bristles start to break down and become less effective. Especially with the case of people who brush their teeth aggressively, bristles can be pushedworn out toothbrush next to new one to the sides or even fall out of toothbrushes. Bristles clean teeth and ensure healthy teeth and gums, so it is very important to replace your toothbrush if the bristles are worn out. If you keep brushing your teeth when the bristles are worn out or breaking, it can actually be very damaging and hurt your gums and overall oral health.

Bacterial Build Ups 

Within the base of a toothbrush bristles bacteria, plaque and germs build up. Over time if you don’t replace your toothbrush, these germs and bacteria will move into your mouth and start affecting the health of your gums and your teeth. Continued use of an old toothbrush will defeat the purpose of brushing your teeth. 


When an individual has been sick, those germs and bacteria from the sickness are transferred to their toothbrush. It is extremely important to replace a toothbrush after a sickness with a cold such as strep throat, the flu, or even just a cold because those germs will stay in your bristles. It is also recommended that if you share a toothbrush holder with someone else and they have been sick, then you should get a new toothbrush. Toothbrushes are usually extremely close to each other within a toothbrush holder and can transfer germs easily.

Contact a Dentist

It is very important to regularly change your toothbrush every three months. However, to make sure your oral health is in good condition, it is also crucial to visit a dentist for regular cleanings. These cleanings help clean the places of your teeth that your toothbrush misses and help catch problems early on. Schedule an appointment today with Dr. Emma Wu for a check-up!

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