It’s hard to tell exactly which is the germiest room in the house. The bathroom? The kitchen? An independent health organization called NSF International conducted a study on this. They noted where they thought the most germs in a household were hiding, and where they actually were.
They looked for these bacteria:
- Coliform (a family of bacteria that includes Salmonella and E.coli)
- Staph Aureus
27% of the homes surveyed had Coliform, a signal of fecal contamination, and it was on the toothbrush holders!
The inside of your toothbrush holder is a little-known germ breeding ground. Twice a day or more, your soggy toothbrush re-enters the toothbrush holder.
Old germs at the bottom of the container scrape the toothbrush, smearing contamination all over. With its dark, damp inside, it’s no wonder 64% of toothbrush holders carry yeast and mold.
If possible, we recommend brushing at least 6 feet away from your toilet. It’s easier to manage germs on and around your toothbrush when you’re aware of germ hiding places like these.
• Use your own toothbrush holders – don’t share!
• Brush only at the sink. Shower water can spread germs from the showerhead to your mouth.
• Wash your hands before brushing.
• Brush for TWO minutes with toothpaste.
• Rinse your toothbrush to remove food debris.
• Dry handle and bristles and store in a dry, clean area.
- Don’t store your brush in a closed cap or container. Bacteria love it in there!
- Never microwave your toothbrush to clean it. It doesn’t disinfect it. We recommend purchasing a new one instead.
- Never share your toothbrush with peers or children. Transferring foreign germs is never good.
You’ll also want to replace your toothbrush if:
- Your toothbrush bristles are fraying.
- You’ve been sick.
- It’s been 3 months since your last toothbrush replacement.
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