Owning a bamboo toothbrush is one of the first steps that you can make towards living an eco-friendly life. It’s an easy switch to make, as it doesn’t require any major lifestyle changes. Even so, the plastic waste it minimizes can leave a lasting impact to nature. Choosing one with extra-soft bristles can make an even bigger difference. It’s gentle to sensitive teeth and kinder to the environment.
What is a bamboo toothbrush?
Bamboo toothbrushes are made of renewable materials instead of the usual hard plastic. They have risen to popularity along with the increasing awareness on the massive carbon footprint that a typical toothbrush can leave on Earth.
Most types have 100% biodegradable bamboo handles, while others use pig or badger hair as bristles to make the whole toothbrush completely compostable. The vegan-friendly kind have nylon bristles, which are less likely to breed germs compared to hollow animal hair.
What are the benefits of using extra-soft bristle toothbrush?
Extra-soft brushes help people with gum diseases like gingivitis and bleeding gums. They are gentler to the touch, and enable you to clean your teeth without extreme discomfort or pain.
A 2018 study found that extra-soft toothbrushes with angled or wavy bristle patterns give the additional benefit of stronger protection against plaque. This is because the criss-crossed design fits more effortlessly with the natural shape of your teeth, allowing it to clean between tight spaces.
The European Journal of Dentistry further states that extra-soft bristles may prevent enamel abrasion and receding gums, so consider this feature when looking for toothbrush for your sensitive teeth. But of course, the right bristle type for you depends on your oral care needs and the advice of your dentist. Most dental professionals recommend soft-bristled toothbrush for thorough removal of plaque. The American Dental Association (ADA) supports this in their campaigns, pointing out that the ideal brush should be able reach all areas of your mouth easily.
What makes bamboo safe and sustainable?
Bamboo is a great renewable source because it grows very fast and it doesn’t need chemicals to stay healthy. Moso or mao zhu bamboo is commonly used to make sustainable toothbrush because of its unique qualities.
Bamboo doesn’t require pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers. It can sustain itself by drawing nitrogen from the soil, and it doesn’t leave harmful chemicals when harvested.
Bamboo has natural antimicrobial agents within its fibers, making it a good material to use for personal products like bedsheets and toothbrushes.
Pandas and orangutans don’t feed on moso bamboo. Harvesting them for production will not destroy animal habitats and food sources.
What are the proper cleaning, storage, and disposal methods for bamboo toothbrushes?
You should clean and store sustainable toothbrushes just like a regular brush. According to the ADA, proper toothbrush care should follow these steps:
- Do not share with anyone to prevent the spread of diseases.
- Wash off all bubbles and debris after each use.
- Store upright and air-dry to prevent microbial growth.
- Replace every three to four months or when the bristles have frayed.
Avoid using microwaves to clean brushes. Aside from possible heat damage, there can be metal wires holding the bristles together. As for disposal, you should first pull out nylon bristles using pliers before upcycling the bamboo handle or putting it in the compost pit. Some recycling centers accept bristles, so check with your community drop-off sites.
MOUTHFUL strives to promote better understanding of sustainable dental health and oral hygiene practices. While we seek credible sources and cite them in our posts, this article does not intend to stand as professional advice. Please reach out to your dentist or a medical expert if you have questions regarding a health condition or treatment.