General Question

wilma's avatar

At what point, when recovering from an illness, should I get a new toothbrush?

Asked by wilma (15756 points ) February 19th, 2012

I have pneumonia.
I have been on azithromycin for three days, I have two more days on that.
I know that when you are ill, it is probably a good idea to get a new toothbrush, but when do you make the change?
Do you get a fresh brush when you start the antibiotic? Do you change when you finish the antibiotic? When your symptoms are all gone? My toothbrush isn’t old, just a few weeks, and I have a new one at the ready, I just want to change it at the optimal time to get the most benefit.

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24 Answers

yixa01's avatar

I would say after you finish the antibiotics, since after that you are pretty much done with the illness and do not want to keep using the one you have when you were sick.

JLeslie's avatar

You could do it on day 4 or 5 of the antibiotics if you are already getting relief from your symptoms. Your bacteria levels are probably already driven way down if you are feeling better. With other antibiotics I might say wait a little longer, assuming you would be taking them 7–10 days, but zmax has a very long half life and is in you for a few days after the last pill.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Um ,,, if you “got over” the illness, you now have an acquired immunity and cannot catch it again.

JLeslie's avatar

@CaptainHarley Not true with many bacterias, is true with many viruses. People get strep throat for instance more than once in their life usually. Can get gonnerhea twice, the list goes on.

CaptainHarley's avatar

@JLeslie

Those are usually mutated bacteria, not the same ones.

JLeslie's avatar

@CaptainHarley Not that I know of, but I could be wrong. Things like colds, which are viruses, are actually many different strains of the rhinovirus that cause very similar symptoms. But, for instance if I have chlamydia, get better with antibiotics, and then have sex with that same guy again, I get the chlamydia back, same strain.

CaptainHarley's avatar

@JLeslie

Then don’t have sex with him again! LOL!

You may indeed be correct about that, since most of my knowledge about the topic is based on reading about it. If I’m wrong, I apolotize.

JLeslie's avatar

@CaptainHarley Just going by what little I know, don’t count me as an expert. In your plan I can sleep with the infected guy all I want.

CaptainHarley's avatar

LMAO! Uhhhh… !

Hain_roo's avatar

I don’t know about you, but my toothbrush heads aren’t cheap.
Why not sterilize instead?

john65pennington's avatar

The same applies to bottled water. I had a really bad sinus infection that would not go away. My doctor gave me strong antibiotics to take. THAT DAY is the day I threw my old toothbrush away, along with a big bottle of water that I take medications with.

Both harbor bacteria..

Most people never think about their bottled water and germs, but they are there.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Expensive toothbrushes? Say what?

JLeslie's avatar

You can just soak the toothbrush in some peroxide and let it dry completely. All the bacteria should die off.

wilma's avatar

@Hain_roo I don’t have an electric toothbrush, just the old manual style, but disinfecting is a good idea.
Maybe I should start using the new one and disinfect it every day for a while.
@john65pennington Good idea about the water bottle.

Coloma's avatar

Yes, I replace mine a few days in on the antibiotic, or when the symptoms of the virus abate. You can also disinfect your toothbrush in bleach water between uses to kill any bacteria between brushing.

Hain_roo's avatar

@wilma Don’t forget to bleach your sink :)

SpatzieLover's avatar

We have one of these UV Sonicares. However, I still use alcohol to sanitize the handle, the outside of the unit and I run my tongue scraper and my other toothbrush through my dishwasher to sanitize when I’m ill.

Personally, I do this during the illness and after the illness. I second bleaching the bathroom. I also bleach the doorknobs, and Lysol other areas of my home.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I am too cheap to throw out my tooth brush when it is still structurally sound. When I’m sick, I rinse it off with dish washing liquid and put it in the dishwasher when I do the dishes.
I’m still alive.

wilma's avatar

I have done all the sanitizing around the house. (In between collapsing on the sofa with exhaustion.)
I got the new toothbrush and I think I’ll disinfect it everyday with mouthwash too.
Now if one of you dear folks would be kind enough to send me some homemade chicken soup I would be ever-so grateful. Just kidding of course, I just made myself some Lipton. I wish I had some homemade stock in the freezer right now.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I so would @wilma. I’ve had pneumonia a few times. It really sucks all of your energy. Rest well m’dear!

JLeslie's avatar

Don’t obsess. By the time the drugs are all out of your system the bacterias laying around in your home will be pretty much gone

Nullo's avatar

Why not just disinfect the sucker?

wilma's avatar

@Nullo I do that once in a while especially when I have a cold, but sometimes when we have something like this nasty respiratory crap going around, I like to get more drastic in my sanitation measures.

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