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Int J Dent Hyg. 2009 Nov;7(4):237-40. doi: 10.1111/j.1601-5037.2009.00384.x.

How clean is the toothbrush that cleans your tooth?

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Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry, KLEVK Institute of Dental Sciences, Belgaum, India.


Until recently, little attention has been directed towards the role the toothbrush may play in human health, even though a report of toothbrush as a significant factor in the infection appeared in 1920. It is common knowledge that the human mouth harbours a wide variety of microorganisms, some of which, at any given time, can be assumed to be potential pathogens. This was not known when toothbrushes were originally designed, yet the common toothbrush has been used in basically the same form for about 200 years. In today's world of organ transplantation and alteration of the immune system, it is important to consider the toothbrush as a source of potential pathogens. Given the fact that very often people will traumatize themselves with their toothbrush, this trauma may become a potential portal of entry for organisms. In this article, we have attempted to demonstrate the importance of toothbrush disinfection, given tips on home toothbrush care and hope to motivate the dentists to educate the patients on the importance of toothbrush disinfection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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