My post today was originally posted on greensuburbanliving.com. Bookmark this site, Laureanna gives great ideas to make the world a cleaner place.
In celebration of dental health month, I thought I’d throw out a couple of ideas for how to reduce your plastic load when taking care of your teeth. How else are you going to be able to smile brightly about all the positive changes you’re making?
A Facebook ad popped up recently with this jarring thought: All the toothbrushes you’ve EVER used are still here on Earth. Let’s say three toothbrushes a year, times your age… And then times over 300 million of us probably doing about the same thing just in the USA. Most of us don’t give a second thought to the free toothbrush we get at the dentist’s office, or even another second thought when we toss out our old, somewhat mangled one into the garbage. We certainly don’t think that it will be on Earth FOREVER.
And beyond the toothbrush material, there’s the packaging to consider. Usually, there’s additional plastic found here too.
In this age of information and innovation, we’re able to make choices that are better for the long term of our planet. Try to avoid all plastic toothbrushes – they’re made from crude oil, and will be around for millions of years, someday breaking down into microplastics that everyone will ingest. Better choices include recycled toothbrushes or ones made from bamboo. This cuts down on our plastic load, and in the case of bamboo, relies on a renewable resource.
My purpose is to educate rather than sell products, so I’ll let you do the research on what might work best for you. Googling “best toothbrush for the environment” gives a trove of leads. Many also offer recyclable packaging! If you try one, or if you have one that works for you, please leave a comment for others. 🙂 At our house, we love the bamboo ones – especially for backpacking, because they’re so lightweight.
Finally, what about the free toothbrush that you get twice a year from the dentist? Remember, you can always say “No, but thank you” and talk about your efforts if they ask. Or, donate it! Homeless and women’s shelters are often looking for basic toiletries items to share with their clients.
Smile more (brightly),