Toothbrushes are the most common tool used to maintain oral hygiene practices worldwide. Consequently, plastic toothbrushes have made a significant impact on plastic pollution.
An average individual is required to change their toothbrushes once every three months. So it was only arbitrary to develop a sustainable alternative that has no consequences on the environment.
Hence, wooden or bamboo toothbrushes became the new IT tool. The sustainable toothbrushes industry was reported to be worth $23.5 million in 2019. Meanwhile, it is reported that the industry will continue to grow at a rate of 9.5% annually from 2020-2027.
However, the question is whether bamboo toothbrushes are worth the hype? And are they really sustainable and environmentally conscious as they are thought to be? Let’s take a deep dive into the science of bamboo toothbrushes.
Bamboo toothbrushes are manual brushes similar in design to plastic toothbrushes. A bamboo brush consists of a long wooden handle instead of plastic – a critical difference between the two. Meanwhile, the bristles on a bamboo brush are made of nylon to remove the plaque and food debris.
How Efficient Is A Bamboo Brush?
Bamboo toothbrushes have an antibacterial effect making them efficient for oral cleaning. Sometimes these brushes are also infused with activated charcoal, which is known to have a whitening effect on the teeth. The effectiveness of a bamboo toothbrush is similar to that of a plastic toothbrush, as stated by retailers and professionals. However, finding the right size that fits the mouth has been a challenge for people worldwide.
Ecological Footprint Of A Bamboo Toothbrush
Bamboo brushes are majorly known for being environmentally friendly and biodegradable. They are also known to have a smaller ecological footprint than plastic toothbrushes. When used in its raw form – bamboo is biodegradable. The rapid growth of bamboo trees is another reason they are considered a sustainable option. The fast-growing root has a shallow risk of deforestation. While bamboo also produces CO2, the overall quantities are much lower as compared to the production of plastic toothbrushes.
While fully biodegradable bamboo brushes exist – the market for them still needs significant work. Meanwhile, the non-degradable bamboo brushes will continue taking up landfill space if just thrown away.
Are Bamboo Brushes The Right Choice?
The bamboo brush isn’t the only solution to the plastic problem. However, it is a big step in the right direction and a better choice than a plastic toothbrush. While from the price point of view, they are on a steeper side and require replacement just as often as a plastic toothbrush. They sure are a reasonable solution to a sustainable lifestyle.
Choosing the right brand can have a massive impact on the carbon footprint as these brushes can be easily recycled and composed. If you have finally decided to take the plunge, consult your dentist and health care provider to make recommendations according to your needs.