Should you share a toothbrush? - National Dental Care

Forgetting your toothbrush during an overnight stay with your partner or accidently using the wrong toothbrush in an early morning daze are fairly common happenings, but do they come at a cost? You share everything with your partner, so should you share a toothbrush?

From transferring bacteria to contracting sickness, sharing a toothbrush poses a threat to your teeth and gums, regardless if you have good oral hygiene or not.

Sharing isn’t always caring

To put it simply, sharing a toothbrush is not a good idea. When using a toothbrush other than your own, you expose your teeth and gums to new bacteria, and it may not play nicely with the bacteria your body already knows.

The particular mix of bacteria in your mouth is unique to you, so introducing new bacteria makes it possible to easily catch a cold, flu, or others germs from the bristles of your partner’s toothbrush. You won’t realise it when it happens, and even if your partner is clean and isn’t suffering from a condition like a cold sore, using their brush spreads bacteria regardless, putting your teeth and gums at risk.

The reality is, couples spread bacteria in many ways, whether it’s through kissing, holding hands or sharing food and drinks. Although this is normal behaviour, the spread of bacteria can be managed by using mouthwash, regularly washing your hands, and avoid sharing a toothbrush no matter how close you and your partner are.

Your mouth is the gateway to your health

Believe it or not, sharing a toothbrush can pose a threat that goes beyond your oral health. Your mouth is the gateway to your health, and there’s a risk of transmitting diseases that are generally transmittable by blood because it’s common for people to experience bleeding gums when they brush their teeth.

Bleeding gums can be a sign of many things, from flossing too aggressively, brushing too hard to periodontal disease, and it’s something you don’t want to share with a partner, let alone any other transmittable conditions.

Instead, book in an appointment with your local dental specialist and ensure the bleeding gums are seen to, while keeping that brush of yours firmly within your own grasp.

If you can’t find your brush, buy a new one

Not only should you never share a toothbrush with another person, you should also aim to replace your toothbrush every three months.

That’s something many of us don’t always remember to do, not unless we’re prompted. But if you’ve forgotten your toothbrush and desperately need one, that might just be all the prompting you need, buying a brush for that moment, and for the next three months.

Good oral hygiene is important for healthy teeth and gums, not to mention your overall health, so keep your brush to yourself, replace it regularly, and take care of those pearly whites, booking in for your regularly scheduled dental appointments to keep things in tip-top shape.

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