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Dental health worsens with dirty toothbrush
Updated: 1/22/2009 3:00:19 PM

Dental health worsens with dirty toothbrush If people do not replace or at least clean their toothbrush, they may be more susceptible to conditions such as gum and heart disease, according to a Mississippi dentist.

Dental hygienist Brenda Elliot said the cleaner a mouth is, the better a person's dental health can be, reports. However, many of her patients are not administering good dental care because of the poor state of their toothbrushes.

"It so obvious and that's probably why it never comes up. But if you could see some people's toothbrushes, you'd be amazed. I've had to tell my own family, 'You need to throw that out,'" Elliot told the news provider.

According to the American Dental Association, people should replace their toothbrush after three or four months. If a person recently had a cold or was sick, the toothbrush should be switched sooner rather than later.

To properly clean one's toothbrush, the ADA recommends rinsing the bristles with tap water and storing it in an upright position so it can air dry. Leaving a toothbrush on the side of the sink or in any other moist environment can produce germs on the brush.

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