How long should one use a toothbrush?

Violet Namata

Violet Namata

, News

Toothbrushes are some of those essential things that we tend to ignore.  Some of us do not know when to change a toothbrush and how to keep it clean.

It is for this reason that many of us suffer from dental problems.

When we wake up, we often rush to the showers to do the daily routine.  We usually start with brushing our teeth before taking a body shower.

Yet question is: for how long should one use a toothbrush before it is disposed of?

This is a question that came to my mind one morning.

I immediately rushed to the streets to ask people if they had knowledge on how long they are required to use their toothbrushes.

Interesting but not shocking many were not aware.

A one Richard, a cyclist, frankly told me that sometimes he uses his toothbrush for over five months.

Eunice Kyankunda, a public health dental officer at Kitante Medical Centre told The Nile Post that ideally, a toothbrush should be used for not more than three months.

She said that if not regularly changed, the toothbrush ceases to perform its proper function of cleaning the teeth well.

“A toothbrush if used everyday the bristles become weak, and instead of being straight like they were, they starts changing shape and they cannot clean the teeth any more,” Kyankunda said.

Kyankunda said one may not necessarily wait for the three or two months to elapse before changing a toothbrush.

There is need to change a toothbrush when the bristles start to get worn out.

Even many of those who are aware of this time frame do not respect it because they find it is expensive to  buy a toothbrush every after three months.

“In this era where we have to pay for almost everything, it is expensive to keep buying tooth brushes,”  Richard, the cyclist, said.

Aside from that many people do not even know the right  toothbrush to use to brush their teeth.

They just buy a toothbrush that is appealing to them.

One of the people interviewed said they prefer toothbrushes with hard bristles because they believe they easily remove dirt from the teeth.

Kyankunda warned that toothbrushes with hard bristles are dangerous for the teeth.

“For dental care we need a tooth brush with soft bristles, the one with hard bristles once used it erodes the enamel. Very many people of late are suffering from the sensitivity of the teeth simply because we have used wrong toothbrushes,” she said.

Kyankunda said to brush your teeth effectively, get the toothbrush or stick and make sure you brush every tooth surface because teeth have surfaces.

She said there is need to store these toothbrushes properly in a hygienic environment to prevent cockroaches and other living organisms from contaminating them.

Kyankunda argued that the nature of work we do has contributed to tooth problems especially among the working class whose environment does not let them brush their teeth in the recommended time.

“We have been reluctant. We have been told to brush every after a meal but how many people do that? Especially the working class whose environment does not favour the practice,” Kyankunda said.


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