From quirky animal-shaped toothbrushes to the electronic toothbrushes that play fun tunes and other traditional (albeit colorful) options, there seems to be no shortage of children’s toothbrushes on the market today.

But when, no matter how much your child enjoys their current product, one question still remains: When should you replace your child’s toothbrush?

If you’ve found yourself asking this question, you’re certainly not alone. Allow us to illuminate the answers of how to keep your child’s smile bright as possible:

Getting Down With General Guidance

Generally speaking, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends “[replacing] toothbrushes every three to four months or more often if the bristles are visibly matted or frayed.”

Especially when children are new to brushing their teeth and maintaining other healthy oral habits, they may have difficulty determining and applying the correct amount of pressure. Thus, if your child exerts too much pressure on their brush, it may warrant a replacement sooner rather than later.

Also be sure to check in with their pediatric dentist regarding this matter. If you suspect your child is brushing their teeth with too much force, they may damage their own teeth or gums over time and you may need to request dental intervention or a softer toothbrush.

Other Opportunities For Oral Optimization

Aside from general age and deterioration, you may want to consider replacing your child’s toothbrush if they’ve recently been sick.

“If you’ve been ill, get a new toothbrush, or you could get sick again,” Colgate explains. “If you have any type of virus, such as a cold sore, you should throw your toothbrush away. Please do not put it in the dishwater, microwave, or use disinfectants to get rid of the germs. Replacing your toothbrush may be a way to help you stay healthy.”

Otherwise, be mindful of where, exactly, your child lays their toothbrush down. If they let the head of the brush itself rest on a contaminated or otherwise dirty surface, you may want to consider throwing it away and opting for a new one.

Also, be sure to replace their toothbrush if somebody else uses it by mistake.

Let Us Brush, Brush, Brush Away Your Doubts

“Great,” you might be thinking. “But how can I help my child to keep their toothbrush clean between now and then?”

Simple: care for it as you would any other personal hygiene product.

“Don’t share your toothbrush with someone else, even members of your immediate family,” Healthline suggests. “If your toothbrush is stored in a cup or container with other toothbrushes, try not to let the heads touch each other.”

Otherwise, if you have further questions about what kind of toothbrush may be best suited to your child’s dental needs, don’t forget to reach out to Setzer, Cochran, and Soares Pediatric Dentistry!

We’re here to help keep your child’s smile as bright and healthy as possible. With decades of combined experience and a team of board-certified dentists and specialists, you can trust your children’s teeth in our hands!

Contact us today to schedule an appointment.