This is a collaborative post.
Maintaining good dental hygiene is essential for a healthy smile, but it’s not always easy to practise good dental care in a sustainable and eco-friendly way. If you want to keep your teeth looking their best without negatively impacting the environment, here are a few swaps, trade-ups, and tips to help you look after your teeth sustainably.
Visit the Dentist
It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to live a fully zero-waste lifestyle or just trying to cut down on your emissions; it’s still important to visit the dentist regularly for a check-up and a cleaning.
For hygiene reasons, dentists often have to use single-use items to check your teeth, and it can seem counterintuitive if you’re trying to live more sustainably. However, looking after your teeth properly by visiting the dentist will reduce your chance of needing fillings, root canals, crowns, or extractions. The fewer procedures you have done, the smaller your impact on the planet in the long run. Check out Biltmore Avenue Family Dentistry (bafdentistry.com) for a good dentist in Asheville, NC.
Ditch the Plastic
Everybody knows the negative impacts that plastic has on the world, but most people still use standard toothbrushes. Every plastic toothbrush that’s been made since they were invented in the 1930s still exists, and most people use around 300 toothbrushes over the course of their lifetimes.
Instead of buying a new plastic toothbrush every six months, consider using a bamboo brush. Bamboo is a fast-growing plant that doesn’t need much water. It’s also biodegradable, so it’s a much more sustainable material than plastic.
If you prefer to use an electric toothbrush, buy toothbrush heads that are both recycled and recyclable. This will prevent unnecessary plastic waste from ending up in a landfill.
What About Floss?
Most floss or dental tape you can buy is made from plastic, and it can’t be recycled. Nowadays, however, you can buy floss made from bamboo, silk, and even corn fibre, so there are numerous ways to ditch the plastic and keep flossing.
Alternatively, you could buy a water flosser. Simply charge it up, fill it with water, and shoot a stream of water between your teeth. Not only is it more environmentally friendly, but it’s also more fun!
And Toothpaste, Too?
The toothpaste in your bathroom probably comes in a non-recyclable container, but you can easily swap it out for a greener choice. There are companies that sell toothpaste in a glass jar to reduce plastic waste, or you could try toothpaste tablets. Simply chew, brush and spit.
Make Your Own Mouthwash
Once you’ve changed your toothbrush, floss, and toothpaste, it’s time to think about your mouthwash. The chances are that your mouthwash comes in a plastic bottle with a plastic cup to drink from. Even if they’re recyclable, it’s better to reduce your reliance on single-use items, so why not make your own mouthwash instead?
Simply mix filtered water with baking soda and a few drops of peppermint essential oil, then fill up a glass bottle or jar and keep it in your bathroom. It’s so easy!
Keeping your teeth healthy doesn’t have to cost the earth, so follow this guide to practising good dental hygiene with minimal impact on the planet.