Ah, the toothbrush. For a tiny, plastic toiletry, it really is loaded with emotion. You wouldn’t dare have headed to that important job interview without its help. Heck, you can’t head to brunch without using it. And every great love begins with the same sheepish statement: “I bought you a toothbrush to keep at my place.”

But at some point, you’re going to need to replace it because…hygiene. But when exactly should you toss it?

The American Dental Association recommends changing out your toothbrush every three to four months. They also suggest examining the bristles often for signs of wear and replacing earlier if the brush bristles become frayed.

If that doesn’t have you convinced, studies also show that the microorganisms found on toothbrushes could cause infection — both in the mouth and in other parts of the body. Your toothbrush can even contain strains of viruses and bacteria that cause the common cold.

But before you run to the bathroom in horror, here are a few things you can do to keep your toothbrush at its cleanest before it gets the boot:

  • Don’t share toothbrushes (duh!).
  • Rinse your toothbrush with water after brushing.
  • Store your toothbrush in an upright position.
  • Soak your toothbrush in antibacterial mouthwash once a week.

xx, The FabFitFun Team