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“The average toothbrush contains around 10 million germs – from bacteria to the flu virus,” says Dr Uchenna Okoye, clinical director of London Smiling Dental Group . “Even potentially fatal viruses, such as Hepatitis C, have been found on the humble brush, so sharing brushes is a big no no.”
Toothbrush heads need to be changed every three months – or after illness. But they also need to be cleaned regularly and stored separately, ideally in a closed cabinet. If out in the open, make sure they’re far away from the toilet!
After every use, rinse bristles thoroughly then shake dry, stand upright and allow to air dry. Once a month, pop manual or electric toothbrush heads in the dishwasher, soak for five minutes in boiling water or use brush cleaning products.