Electric toothbrushes have proven to be a game-changer in maintaining oral health perfectly. And, of course, good oral hygiene prevents many dental problems like gum disease, cavities, and even bad breath.
These toothbrushes offer more benefits than traditional counterparts, including better cleaning power, applications, and efficiency. But it would be best if you changed the brush head regularly to continue reaping the benefits of it. Do you know how often to change electric toothbrush head?
In short, you should change it every 3 months or 12 weeks. Failing to do so can lead to many harmful consequences. However, this blog will explain the importance and frequency of changing the toothbrush head. You will learn how to maintain your electric toothbrush for optimal oral health.
Benefits of Using an Electric Toothbrush
Why an electric toothbrush?
Well. There are multiple benefits to choosing electric toothbrushes for your teeth. And you can get these benefits consistently if you change your head timely. Therefore, these can be some of the advantages:
More effective in cleaning teeth
Comparatively, these toothbrushes are more effective than manual toothbrushes in cleaning teeth. They have a rotating or oscillating head that offers more thorough and consistent cleaning. Moreover, several items feature pressure sensors and timers to maintain the correct pressure and time for brushing.
Better control in brushing teeth
Electric toothbrushes can be more convenient and more accessible to use than manual toothbrushes. All it takes is a push of a button to start brushing. Besides, some brands may have built-in timers. This feature helps ensure you brush your teeth for the recommended two minutes.
Reduces the risk of gum disease
Periodontitis, alias gum disease, is a very known dental problem. It often leads to tooth loss if you leave it untreated. In this case, you can use electric toothbrushes. They can remove plaque by reaching tough areas (a significant cause of gum disease) more than manual brushes.
Better for people with limited mobility
There are people around who have diseases like arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or other conditions that make them tough to brush correctly. Again, electric toothbrushes can be helpful for these people to brush with less effort and dexterity.
Improves overall oral health.
You can keep your oral health fine by using electric toothbrushes. They can protect your gums and teeth from cavities, gum disease, and others. Also, your teeth will shine better than with manual brushes.
The Importance of Changing Electric Toothbrush Heads
Conforti et al. (2013) discovered in a study that a new toothbrush or brush head can reduce more plaque than worn-out or old ones. Similarly, The Oral Health Foundation suggests changing the toothbrush head regularly (2-3 months). An Encinitas Orthodontics dentist, Dr. Dena, also recommends replacing it within three months or less.
So, you can find many experts suggesting shifting the electric toothbrush head. But what would be the reasons for changing them? Let’s see the reasons below:
The buildup of bacteria on the bristles
We often leave the toothbrush in a moist, enclosed environment. Over time, the bristles on the brush head become safe from bacteria buildups. They can lead to infection development or other health issues. Hence, you can prevent the buildups by changing the brush head regularly.
The wearing down of bristles over time
You may have already seen the bizarre look of toothbrush heads after using them for a long time. Do they look good? Well, the bristles can fray or become worn gradually if you do not replace the head. As a result, the worn-out toothbrush head becomes less effective in cleaning teeth and gums. It may also damage the enamel of teeth.
You have health issues
Changing the toothbrush can protect you from reinfection, especially if you are experiencing a cold, flu, or other. The onsite viruses and bacteria of toothbrushes can cross-contaminate into toothbrushes that other people use in the family. So, it is ideal for disposing of an old electric toothbrush head and replacing it with a fresh one.
How Often to Change Electric Toothbrush Head?
You know the importance of changing the brush head now. Let’s move to the main topic of this blog: how often to change an electric toothbrush head.
The recommendations of dentists and manufacturers
While checking out many conversations and expert dentists’ recommendations, I have found that you should change the electric toothbrush head every 3-4 months. It is based on the average lifespan of a toothbrush head and the frequency of use. Furthermore, the manufacturers of these brushes also agree with the dentists.
You should keep an eye on the condition of the bristles. Then, replace the toothbrush head more frequently if worn or frayed. Also, a change in the performance can be another indicator to change the device.
Impact of factors on replacement frequency
Some factors are there to impact the frequency of replacing the electric toothbrush head:
- Frequency of use: Do you brush once or twice a day? If your habit is brushing your teeth more than twice a day, you may need to replace the brush head more frequently.
- Pressure you apply when brushing: Applying too much pressure makes the bristles on the brush head wear out more quickly. As a result, you will need to change the brush head more often.
- Dental health issues: Do you have any dental problems like gum disease, gingivitis, or others? Your dentist may recommend quicker replacing the toothbrush for better oral hygiene.
- Type of bristles: The bristles on an electric toothbrush head can impact its durability. If they are more prone to fraying or wearing out quickly, you should look for more frequent brush head changes.
- Brush head quality: Like the bristle type, you should also consider the brush head quality. It can also impact its lifespan. For instance, you may need to change the cheaper, lower-quality brush heads more frequently.
- Environmental factors: You may need more frequent changing of the electric toothbrush head for some environmental factors—for example, humidity, exposure to heat, and bacteria.
Tips for Maintaining Electric Toothbrush Heads
I hope you have the best electric toothbrush for maintaining the health of your teeth well. But without proper maintenance, you may need to change its brush head very often. That is why I have some essential tips for maintaining and reducing the frequency (maximum 3-4 months per brush head) of changing it.
Rinse the brush head after each use
Maintain a habit of rinsing the electric toothbrush with water after using it. It will remove any remaining toothpaste or debris.
Store the brush head in a clean, dry place
You should store the brush in a clean and dry place when you are not using it. It will prevent bacteria and other germ buildups. Also, avoid storing it in a closed container, as it can promote bacterial growth.
Avoid sharing your brush head
Willingly or by mistake, you should never share your electric toothbrush with others. It can spread bacteria and increase the risk of infection. Still, if you want, suggest others use different brush heads per person in your household.
Clean the brush head regularly
There is no alternative to keeping anything clean that you use frequently. Similarly, you should clean the brush head. For a few minutes, you can soak it in a mixture of water, vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide. Then, rinse it thoroughly with water to clean it thoroughly. Alternatively, you can use a specialized brush head cleaner.
Replace the brush head regularly
Any dentist you ask will recommend replacing your electric toothbrush head every 3-4 months. Depending on the factors I have discussed, you may need to replace it sooner than three months.
Avoid using cleaning chemicals
You should not use mouth or other cleaning stuff like mouthwash, soap, or disinfectants. They may cause harm to the brush head and, indeed, your gum. Besides, you should not put it in boiling water, microwave, or dishwasher. They may wrap the bristles on the brush head.
Use professional applications.
Several toothbrush manufacturers may offer smartphone apps to track the frequency of brushing and the length of using the brush head. For example, Oral-B offers a great phone app to help you brush your teeth with an electric toothbrush.
I hope now you know how often to change electric toothbrush heads. You should change it every 3-4 months at maximum.
Using the same brush head for more than this period may impact overall oral health. After all, worn or damaged bristles can lead to gum irritation, inflammation, and even tooth decay. So, you should prioritize oral hygiene and make regular brush head replacements.
I suggest you follow the tips I have discussed and maintain the frequency of replacing the existing toothbrush head.
Thanks for reading this blog. Smile a lot!