Brushing your teeth twice a day leads to good dental hygiene, and of course, it is indeed a good manner but do we look into the problems that our usual toothbrushes caused ??
Before discussing the problems let's just overview the origin of plastic toothbrushes.
The plastic toothbrush as we know it today has not been around that long. Before Tree twigs or implements created from animal parts were utilised to keep a healthy mouth before it was invented in 1938. The authors of the book Dental Biotribology explain the origins of toothbrushing, which date back to 3500 BC in Babylonia when chewing sticks were utilised. "One end of the chewing stick was chewed until it became brushlike, while the other end was pointed and used as a toothpick," according to Chinese records dating back to 1600 BC. Around the same time, the first bristled toothbrush was invented in China and brought back to Europe by traders."
Chewing sticks, also known as miswaks, is an important component of Muslim culture and are still widely used in the Middle East, Africa, the rural south of the United States, and Asia today. Meanwhile, in Europe and later in North America, the evolution of the toothbrush went on a different path.
Then came the invention of nylon, and the first nylon bristle toothbrush, manufactured of the nylon yarn, was released in 1938. Nylon bristles remained the favoured material for bristles, although thermoplastic materials were used for the handles. Now, let's return to the issues that toothbrushes cause. The Issues and Consequences of Using Plastic Toothbrushes Every year, about 3.5 million plastic toothbrushes are sold around the world. This is only one facet of the problem.
Traditional toothbrushes, on the other hand, are constructed of nylon bristles and a plastic handle, which might take over 400 years to degrade. To make matters worse, when the toothbrushes disintegrate, they leave behind microplastic fragments, which is where the problem begins.
Microplastic can get into the soil, where it can end up in our food. And it gets worse: little particles of plastic are picked up and washed away into the sea or natural water sources after heavy rain. Finally, this indicates that the microplastic can enter your body.
This is causing issues such as:
• Immune system deficiency
• Congenital disabilities
It's also not beneficial for the animals. When microplastic particles enter the water system, they are mistaken for food by fish.
The animal eventually dies from a blockage in its intestines. These are just a few of the reasons why you should consider what you brush your teeth with.
In two ways, the transition from natural and biodegradable materials to synthetic or semi-synthetic polymers has had a significant influence on our planet. Plastic has prevailed as a material during the previous few of decades due to its low cost, simple production process, adaptability, and water resistance, allowing humanity to achieve technical improvements in all sectors of life. However, the environmental consequences are severe, as plastic's chemical structure makes it resistant to natural disintegration. The exact amount of plastic waste produced in the last century is unknown, but according to a paper published by American researchers titled "Production, use, and the fate of all plastics ever made," 8,300 million metric tonnes (Mt) of virgin plastics were produced by 2017 and "roughly 12,000 Mt of plastic waste will be in landfills or the natural environment by 2050."
With a global population of 7.53 billion people, this translates to around 29.4 billion toothbrushes every year. Because a plastic toothbrush weighs roughly 20 g on average, it's possible to estimate that humanity generates 600 million kg of plastic toothbrush waste in just 365 days.
Bamboo toothbrushes are the greatest plastic toothbrush substitute. There are a few reasons why bamboo brushes are preferable to plastic brushes. The most persuasive reason is that bamboo is far more environmentally friendly.
Bamboo is a naturally fast-growing plant that can thrive in arid environments. This means you won't have to worry about running out of material.
But, more crucially, bamboo is completely biodegradable, meaning it has no negative impact on the environment. After you've finished using the toothbrush, simply cut off the bristles and discard the handle in the compost. Bamboo toothbrushes have a lower carbon footprint than plastic toothbrushes because of these two considerations.
Because bamboo can grow almost anywhere, it is quite easy to find locally. As a result, it doesn't have to be transported as far. Another significant advantage is that it reduces the consumption of fossil fuels. Because plastic is made from fossil fuels, it is extremely harmful.
So There's no better place to start than with a bamboo toothbrush if you want to help the environment.