17 Dec Dentist Riddhi Katara sheds light on why you should change your toothbrush post COVID 19 recovery?
While the COVID-19 vaccines are effective as a preventive measure against the virus, experts believe that the jabs can’t guarantee 100 percent protection from the Coronavirus in all situations. Hence, taking precautions has become extremely important, both, for those who had recovered from infection and those who are not infected.
Dentists have now recommended that a person who has recently recovered from COVID-19 should immediately change their toothbrush. They believe that doing so can save the person from re-infection as well as others who utilise the same washroom. So, celebrity dentist Dr Riddhi Katara talks about changing your toothbrush after recovering from the deadly virus.
If you or anyone in your family and friend circle have contracted Covid-19, once recovered, please ensure to change your toothbrush, tongue cleaner etc. These can harbour the virus, and so it is best they are discarded. Generally, people who had been infected with seasonal flu, cough and cold should change their toothbrush and tongue cleaners upon recovery. If you have contracted Covid-19, you should change your toothbrush and tongue cleaner after 20 days of getting the first symptoms. Bacteria/virus builds up over time on the surface of the toothbrush and this is known to cause upper respiratory tract infections.
As a prevention, doctors prescribe using mouthwash and betadine gargle that helps in reducing build-up of virus/bacteria in the mouth. If a mouthwash is not available, rinsing the mouth with warm saline (warm water + salt) water also works fine. Apart from this, one must maintain oral hygiene and brush twice a day.
How COVID-19 can spread via toothbrush?
COVID-19 is known to spread through droplets released when a person coughs, sneezes, shouts, talks and laughs. The coronavirus is also airborne meaning that once released from an infected person it can stay in the air for a while and be transmitted to other people.
COVID-19 can spread through toothbrush and tongue cleaners as these items belonging to an infected person are likely to have a significantly high concentration of SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19. Hence continued use of these items can lead to re-infection or fresh COVID-19 infection in others.
If someone in a household has contracted coronavirus then it is advisable that the toiletry items (toothbrush, tongue cleaner, etc.) used by the infected person should be thrown out.