So now that you know how to: help maintain a cavity free mouth and, all the great tools available to help you do so. Next comes the last part, maintenance of your repertoire of home care tools. So if you’ve ever wondered ‘How to keep my toothbrush clean?’ then read on..
Your toothbrush is the most important tool in your home care regimen so keeping it clean and up to date is very important. Here are the basics:
1: Whether using an electric toothbrush or a manual toothbrush it should be replaced every 3 months. The easiest way is to change your brush or electric toothbrush head with the change of the seasons or if the bristles begin to look splayed or frayed.
2: While brushing your teeth your brush is cleaning all the debris, plaque and bacteria that you’ve accumulated over the day. After brushing you should sanitize your toothbrush, we recommend rinsing it with Listerine then rinsing with water and letting air dry.
3. And lastly, When storing your toothbrush you want to store it head up allowing it to air dry in an area away from an open toilet. If you can store it in a medicine cabinet or something similar that is best.
Many of our patients own and use appliances at home whether they be retainers, Invisalign aligners, nightguards or sleep apnea oral appliances, these appliances need special care to maintain them and keep them clean.
1. In the morning upon removal of the appliance you should use a wet toothbrush to gently clean off the appliance, stay away from abrasive toothpastes when cleaning any appliance made of acrylic or soft rubbery material as the toothpaste may cause it to become porous and more susceptible to bacteria buildup.
2. Many of your appliances can be soaked in a chlorhexidine mouth rinse or Listerine for a period of time to help reduce bacteria build up as well. Please check with your dentist before you do so as some of these rinses may stain certain materials
3. Also, for clear retainers and Invisalign aligners, often over time the aligners may discolor due to normal wear. You can place your retainer or aligner in a small glass of water with a cap full of hydrogen peroxide, this will help clear up the stain on the aligner.