They say you should replace your toothbrush every month or so, and even sooner if you have been suffering from a sore throat or other mouth-related problems.
This sounds like perfectly good advice, as – if you think about it – just rinsing off your brush after using it means bacteria from your mouth mostly stays on the bristles, ready to re-infect you next time.
(Pause to imagine how disgusting that sounds…)
Short of using a new toothbrush every day, putting it through the dishwasher on a regular basis, or installing one of those ultraviolet disinfecting machines you see at clinics and salons, there isn’t much to do about this apart from stifling your imagination and hoping for the best.
Unless this entertaining device I found recently actually works…
From Dr Tungs, a brand I have never heard of before, it’s a snap-on toothbrush sanitiser that claims to use natural essential oils to kill germs and neutralise bacterial growth on your toothbrush. A small disc attaches to a regular toothbrush cover, with tiny holes on the inside surface which apparently release disinfecting vapours.
For S$6.50, you get a cover with a disc attached, plus 2 extra discs. Each disc lasts 2 months so this gives you 6 months protection – not a bad deal!
The packet says the disc contains one or more of lemon, lime, peppermint, tea tree and thyme oils, which surprised me slightly. I mean, is there not a consistent recipe, or would any of these oils do the same job by themselves?
The disc in my toothbrush cover smells very like it contains tea tree oil, and I was slightly concerned that this would be overpowering as I cleaned my teeth. So far, though, although the brush does smell when I take it from the cover, giving it a rinse and applying toothpaste makes any potential taste undetectable.
I’m not saying this works, and I’m not sure how I would be able to tell either way, but there appears to be no harm in continuing to give it a try.