Happy Valentine's Day!
I want you all to be my Valentine. Just don't tell Faye, ok? It'll be our little secret.
Now that I have gotten that out of the way, let's move on to more pressing matters. No, this isn't about that pile of clean laundry that needs to be ironed. After all, that's why they make "Wash n' Wear" clothing. No, this is about toothbrushes. And that goes with Valentine's Day when you think about it. A clean and healthy mouth is much more pleasant to kiss than one that resembles a box of licorice and chocolate Chiclets.
I was brushing what few teeth I have left and musing (it's what I do) about oral health. I was rinsing my toothbrush and began thinking... "What about the germs that might grow on that toothbrush?" After all, germs grow just about anywhere. And I looked at the mouthwash bottle sitting there on the countertop and wondered if it couldn't be used to cut down on the germs on that toothbrush.
And then I wondered what the ADA thought about this issue. So I Googled them.
While there is evidence of bacterial growth on toothbrushes, there is no clinical evidence that soaking a toothbrush in an antibacterial mouthrinse or using a commercially-available toothbrush sanitizer has any positive or negative effect on oral or systemic health.
Clearly, I was disappointed when I read that. But, undaunted, I continued on... and found this header/lead-in:
Common-sense supports that for patients who are more susceptible to infections, a higher level of vigilance to prevent exposure to disease-causing organisms may offer some benefit.
Under which there were several suggestions, one of which was this:
- Soaking toothbrushes in an antibacterial mouthrinse after use has also been studied and may decrease the level of bacteria that grow on toothbrushes
This information was put out in 2005. So why did my dentist not tell me?