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Using Your Head: A New Study on Brushes

Using Your Head: A New Study on Brushes

While brushing regularly (at least twice a day, with flossing) is the general rule that Dr. Barrett asks patients to follow, new research on the type of toothbrush one might use has thrown another variable into the mix: your toothbrush head.

Are you a solid head or a hollow head?

According to a study performed at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Dentistry, hollow head toothbrushes can contain up to 3,000 times the amount of bacterial growth as a solid head toothbrush!

In the study, participants used one of three (randomly assigned) power toothbrushes to brush with twice daily for three weeks. At the same time, the brush heads were exposed to oral microorganisms. Researchers found that hollow head toothbrushes outshined the solid core brushes in their warm hospitality for bacteria and other microbes– by far.

Hold on, I didn’t know my toothbrush even had features like “solid core”

Good point– many people don’t! This is the first study to look into the difference, and most power toothbrushes don’t include this information on their packaging. Instead, look at the connection between the head of the toothbrush and the body– a significant portion should be solid, with no air pocket in between.

Before you dash out to the store, remember…

While you might want to consider a “solid core” toothbrush head for your next purchases, there’s another important message to this study: even though we love them for the amazing, smile-enhancing tools that they are– toothbrushes carry bacteria. They can’t help it, they work with the little guys every day.

So when purchasing your next toothbrush, consider looking for a solid core toothbrush head. Additionally, soft, nylon bristles are harder for microbials to inhabit. And while working with your toothbrush, remember to keep it clean and dry in between uses and take the time to soak in mouthwash every other night or so to disinfect.

Remember: Dr. Barrett loves questions!

If you have questions about this or any other news in dentistry, bring your questions to your next appointment at the best choice for family dental Beaverton has to offer: Barrett Family Dental

Photo Credit: rogeriobromfman via Compfight cc

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