Any quip user worth their salt knows that a healthy mouth is the gateway (both literally and figuratively) to a healthy body and mind. Our products and services are designed to help users maintain a consistent routine — one that involves brushing for two minutes, twice per day. But what about the toothbrush itself? If a brush is the key to a healthy life, it’s important to be mindful about keeping it healthy, thus keeping you healthy and happy. Beyond switching out your brush head every three months, there are other ways to ensure the health of your toothbrush, and can bring your oral care to the next level!
The bacterial truth
In order to maintain great oral health, it’s crucial to understand what great oral health means. Think it’s a shiny, bleached smile? Not necessarily. The human mouth contains countless bacteria, and while certain bacteria can certainly be harmful, plenty of germs are essential and expected in a healthy mouth. Naturally, the tools we use to clean our mouths are never going to be 100% germ-free. While it’s important to limit harmful bacteria (by changing out your brush head after recovering from a cold, for example), there are no studies that indicate sanitizing your toothbrush reduces the chances of contracting illness. Whether it’s a specialized sanitizing device, or antibacterial mouthwash, there is no evidence to support that these methods make a marked difference in the health of your toothbrush. By accepting that there will always be some bacteria present in your mouth and its cleaning tools, you are already on the way to excellent oral care.
Where you store your brush has an enormous impact on its hygiene and effectiveness in your routine, and improper storage can promote growth of the wrong kinds of bacteria. After brushing, always be sure to thoroughly rinse your bristles of any residue, and store your toothbrush standing upright to allow for proper drying.
When storing your brush, in addition to positioning it upright, it’s vital to keep it out in the open. Hiding your brush away in a cupboard or drawer prevents airflow, and a moist brush head is a breeding ground for bacteria and mold. Keeping your toothbrush standing on a counter, or in a mount suctioned to a mirror or glossy surface (who knows where you can find one of those…), will ensure good air circulation.
While it’s crucial to store your brush out in the open, be sure to keep a healthy distance from the toilet and sink, and from any cleaning products. Try getting into the habit of closing the toilet lid before flushing – this can help keep all of your health aids and tools as clean as possible, without any poo-particle problems.
When traveling, it can be tricky to adhere to the same habits as in your bathroom at home. In fact, travel is one instance in which keeping your toothbrush covered is better for its health — and yours! The key is using a travel case that includes air holes, and doesn’t trap moisture. No one wants to deal with a moldy toothbrush on vacation, so be sure to remove your toothbrush from its travel cover as soon as possible, so that it can dry out and breathe. It also never hurts to have a couple extra brush heads on hand.
Keeping your toothbrush healthy and safe to use is all about good habits and common sense. In addition to changing your brush head every three months and never sharing brush heads, these daily steps make it easy to keep a consistent routine. Remember: a happy brush is a happy life :)