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Have you ever thought that sharing or borrowing a toothbrush is probably harmless, especially if you rinse the brush off first? In reality, though, you shouldn’t share your toothbrush or ever let anyone else use your brush.

When you brush your teeth, bacteria will get into your brush. In fact, you should replace your toothbrush once every few months to avoid exposing your teeth to these bacteria. When you use someone else’s brush, you could be introducing your teeth to a number of bad bacteria. Also, many toothbrushes can harbor blood since individuals can bleed when they brush or floss. If you use a brush with someone else’s blood on it, you could find yourself with diseases like herpes, hepatitis, and HPV. Sharing saliva can also leave you more vulnerable to yeast infections and to pneumonia.

But what can you do if you find yourself without a brush? You could consider using your finger. Admittedly, this option isn’t ideal, but will work in emergency situations. Using mouthwash may be helpful as well. If you’re worried about bad breath, there are certain foods and drinks that could be helpful, such as apples and peppermint tea.

If you have any questions about sharing a toothbrush, please don’t hesitate to contact Rainier Dental Center at 206.329.1100. Dr. Obiora E. Nkwonta and our team will be happy to answer any questions you have. We’re eager to hear from you soon.