As a nation, we are becoming increasingly aware of our impact on the environment and many of us are looking for ways in which to live more sustainably. From the 5p plastic bag charge in supermarkets to those of us who try to go ‘plastic free’ when purchasing packaged goods, it is something that many of us are taking very seriously nowadays.
Toothbrushes are traditionally a throwaway commodity, made almost entirely of plastic and used for a relatively short amount of time before they are disposed of. It is estimated that more than 2 billion plastic toothbrushes ending up in landfill sites every year. They are not something that is typically recyclable, so this has left some consumers feeling concerned about the ongoing environmental impact of cleaning their teeth. Here at Bristol family dentists CK Dental, we wanted to share some information about how to be more environmentally aware when making choices about your toothbrushes.
There are in fact eco-friendly toothbrushes and dental care products that are designed specifically with environmental impact in mind. These toothbrushes are made using recycled plastic and/or more sustainable products such as bamboo.
Avoiding plastic nasties
Amongst their environmental credentials, the eco-friendly toothbrushes are often BPA free, which means they don’t contain certain chemicals which are believed to be harmful to humans. BPA is found in many plastic products, ranging from plastic bottles to toothbrushes, and with increased awareness of what BPA is and what it does, have come an increasing amount of people who are keen to avoid it where possible. “Some research has shown that BPA can seep into food or beverages from containers that are made with BPA. Exposure to BPA is a concern because of possible health effects of BPA on the brain, behaviour and prostate gland of foetuses, infants and children. Additional research suggests a possible link between BPA and increased blood pressure.”
Not just the toothbrush
There are more sustainable toothpastes and floss on the market too, all of which can be sourced from specialist stores and online. Some are even making their way into mainstream shops now too. For those of us who are more ethically aware, these promise to contain more sustainable ingredients that are sourced and supplied in a more humane way. These toothpaste products contain more naturally derived products and ingredients from ethically managed supply chains.
This just goes to show that more ethical and sustainable products are available across so many aspects of our lives; we just need to know where to look for them. If throwing away plastic toothbrushes doesn’t sit comfortably with you, there are many more environmentally sustainable options out there to explore.