Follow these sustainable, environmentally-friendly dental health habits to improve tooth and gum care while supporting a cleaner planet and greener future.
Being eco-friendly has been a trending topic for a while, but this issue is more pressing now than ever before. We’re at a critical turning point in preventing irreversible climate change, and it’s not too late to reshape our habits for the better.
Making small changes in one’s oral care routine, from choosing the right oral care products to disposing of them properly, can help us take care of the environment. Here are 10 ways to keep your mouth healthy in a sustainable way!
- Turn off your water
Turning off the tap water while brushing your teeth saves 12 liters of water — each time! Think of how much water you could save if you apply this when shaving, taking a shower, and washing your face.
- Use a bamboo toothbrush
Many toothbrushes are made out of non-degradable and non-recyclable materials, such as plastic handles and nylon bristles. This means the 50 millions pounds of plastic waste generated from toothbrushes each year never really leaves the planet. Bamboo toothbrushes are compostable and biodegradable, meaning they easily break down in landfills, and they’re just as effective as your typical plastic toothbrush.
- Use an electric toothbrush
Certain kinds of electric toothbrushes have a reusable bottom or base, and you just replace the top when the bristles get worn down. While there is still waste generated, it’s significantly less than getting a new toothbrush every time. Make sure to properly dispose of any batteries or get an electric toothbrush that plugs into the wall to further reduce waste.
- Repurpose your toothbrush
Once you’ve replaced your old toothbrush with an eco-friendly version, you can reuse it instead of throwing it away. Clean your jewelry, sneakers, computer keyboard, kitchen appliances, window sills, and even between bathroom tiles with your old toothbrush. You could also use an old toothbrush as a beauty tool to push back flyaway hairs, brush your eyebrows, and scrub your lips. The possibilities are endless!
- Use a dry toothpaste
While toothpaste itself is not bad for the environment, the packaging — particularly plastic tubes, caps, and boxes — is very wasteful. Toothpaste tablets or powders are highly concentrated and water-free, so they require less packaging to stay fresh. These toothpaste alternatives are usually sold in recyclable glass jars, aluminum tins, or cardboard containers to further promote sustainability.
- Change your floss
Every year, we throw away enough plastic dental floss containers to fill a football stadium. Floss containers, along with the nylon floss itself, never disintegrate and stay in a landfill forever. Alternatively, eco-friendly floss is made from silk and natural beeswax or plant wax, all of which is rapidly biodegradable. You could also invest in a water flosser, which uses even less packaging waste.
- Make a DIY mouthwash
Plastic mouthwash containers can be recyclable, but you can reduce waste entirely by making your own mouthwash and storing it in a reusable glass container. You can use apple cider vinegar, baking soda, and even coconut or peppermint oil as a mouthwash. Be extra careful not to swallow any!
- Don’t rinse after brushing
You can further reduce water waste by not rinsing your mouth with water after brushing your teeth. Instead of rinsing, simply spit out any excess toothpaste after brushing. This will also help you conserve toothpaste, since rinsing immediately after brushing will wash away the concentrated benefits in the toothpaste.
- Research recycling options
As you’re phasing out of wasteful dental health practices, you can research how to recycle old toothpaste tubes, toothbrushes, and dental floss containers in your area. There are also certain places you can send your non-traditionally recyclable oral health products.
- Go to a green dentist
Visit a dental clinic like Espire, who cares about minimizing their effect on the environment and maintaining a small carbon footprint. By using high-tech innovations and enforcing best conservation practices, green dentists can lower pollution, reduce waste, and save resources like water and energy.
Be Eco-Friendly with Espire
At Espire Dental, the Earth’s health is as important to us as your dental health. We know there are ways to care for the planet, just as we care for our teeth and gums. Go green while maintaining a white, clean, and healthy smile with Espire! To schedule an appointment, call our La Mesa location at (619) 430-2616 or contact us online.