How to Clean a Toothbrush: Sterilize, Sanitize, & Disinfect the Easy Way
July 12, 2019
Cleaning your toothbrush regularly is almost as important as using your toothbrush regularly to clean your teeth and gums!
Because we stick our toothbrush into our mouths two times a day for up to three months straight an enormous amount of germs can grow in the bristles which can make us sick even while the brush removes plaque and food debris from our teeth.
Most oral hygienists and dental professionals will recommend you switch out your brush every three months but many will recommend you clean your brush weekly, and immediately after a handful of situations like sicknesses or dropped brushes in disgusting places, etc.
If you think sanitizing your toothbrush heads occasionally is worth it then we’ve got your back! We know how gross a brush can get under normal circumstances and use and we are huge advocates for keeping them disinfected regularly.
Luckily there are lots of different ways to sterilize your toothbrush, most of the main ways are covered here on this website in great depth on the following linked pages.
Please, take some time to read through a few of the toothbrush maintenance pages listed below and make this part of your routine household cleaning; your health will surely improve if you do so!
The Best Ways to Regularly Clean Your Toothbrush
This list is the central hub for all toothbrush cleaning posts on this website. It summarizes all posts in the category and links directly to them all for more comprehensive posts on subtopics. Enjoy!
One of the easiest and most effective ways to clean your toothbrush regularly is to periodically soak it in hydrogen peroxide. You don’t need much because the brush head is so small and it doesn’t take very long either because hydrogen peroxide is such an effective antibacterial agent. Please see this post for all the extra information you might want on this simple cleaning procedure.
Lots of people swear by using baking soda for all their natural cleaning needs… and for good reason too! Baking soda is very effective at cleaning all different types of surfaces. It disinfects and eliminates most things that can make you sick. This post outlines the process for using baking soda to effectively clean your toothbrushes.
If you are really in a bind to get a toothbrush clean there is no doubt that bleach will kill all the germs and bacteria on it… but should you? Is bleach to harsh on the brush itself and is the brush safe to use again after using bleach on it? All these questions are answered here on this page. It’s worth taking a look even if you think another cleaning solution makes more sense to you.
As is well documented, vinegar is one of the best household cleaning solutions you can ever stock in your pantry. It is capable of cleaning and disinfecting nearly all household surfaces including items like your toothbrush. Not only that but it is safe for human consumption so if you clean your brush head and bristles with vinegar and don’t rinse it off completely it will be perfectly safe for your body! Check out this article for tips on cleaning your brush with vinegar.
Alcohol is another viable solution to killing germs and bacteria that may be growing in the bristles of your toothbrush. There are however different types of alcohols that can be used for this purpose so we’ve prepared a full article on the topic. If you think that using alcohol to disinfect your toothbrush may be a great idea then see this article for a lot of tips and guidance.
Hydrogen peroxide is a great way to clean a toothbrush but lots of people just don’t always have it on hand and many people that do don’t usually keep it in the bathroom. Mouthwash however is usually easily found in most medicine cabinets and because it contains disinfecting agents it can work really well at keeping your toothbrush clean and sanitary. See this article for instructions and related thoughts on the matter.
Some people are advocates for this method because of it’s seemingly easy and speedy steps. After all anyone just just throw something in the microwave and hit a button or two. There are however a number of major concerns with this method so it’s just not a way to keep things clean that we can recommend. In this article we go into the details as to why this isn’t a very good cleaning or disinfecting solution.
If you think that boiling your toothbrush is a good idea to keep things clean then you are actually right. It may not be the best way to clean your toothbrush but it is a huge step up from simply rinsing it off before and after use. The hot water isn’t as strong at killing bacteria and germs as other methods though so please read this article to see how we recommend people get the job done. Boiling can be a good and inexpensive way to augment a more thorough deep cleaning which occurs a little less frequently.
More Important Toothbrush Maintenance Tips
How Long Should a Toothbrush Last? – Ever wonder when you are supposed to throw away a toothbrush and replace it with a new one? If you carefully read the back of most toothbrush packages you’l frequently find instruction to do this every three months or so depending on a few different situations and/or scenarios. As a rule of thumb three months is good advice but this post covers all the caveats to keep in mind when it comes to manual or electric toothbrushes.
The Best Ways to Store Your Toothbrush – Most definitely cleaning your toothbrush is very important to do from time to time but storing it properly can greatly decrease the amount of germs and bacteria that accumulate on your bristles. If you want to clean your brush less often then you should simply start storing it better. There are a number of ways to improve your toothbrush holder and in this post we cover the best places to put a toothbrush when it is not in use while also discussing the dangers of improper storage.