How to recycle toothbrushes

Coastal Dental Care is encouraging you, the public, to wage your own war on waste by recycling your used dental products. Don’t know how to recycle toothbrushes? Well look no further.

We are proud to be a drop-off location for old toothbrushes, toothpaste and oral health waste. You can just throw it into one of our branded recycling boxes across our Gold Coast and Northern NSW practices. The great initiative is the work of US based Terracycle, who have partnered with Colgate to deliver their Oral Care Recycling Program.

This will ensure on your next visit it will be a breeze to discard your old toothbrushes and tubes. By making more conscious choices when it comes to waste, we can help protect our planet and preserve our natural environment.

Recycling at Coastal Dental Care

Your dentist recommends replacing your toothbrush every few months to ensure optimal oral health. While this is important for the health of your teeth and gums, it is not always the best option for mother nature.

Fortunately, more people are learning how to recycle toothbrushes and are adopting greener purchasing habits by buying recyclable bathroom products. The catch is, dental products often contain a complex mix of materials that makes them harder to recycle.

Sadly, toothbrushes and tubes make up for a percentage of the waste in our landfills, with some ending up in our precious waterways.

By remembering to bring your old brush or tube in to one of our practices, you can help divert hundreds of thousands of oral care products from entering landfill.

With the addition of Coastal Dental Care’s Terracycle recycling initiative, we have compiled a list of handy tips for recycling these items.

Terracycle toothbrush recycling bin

How to recycle toothbrushes

Worn toothbrushes can be a handy tool for many odd jobs around the house. Toothbrushes are great for cleaning the following:

  • Shoes – polishing, scrubbing off dirt and debris
  • Showers and bathrooms
  • Tools
  • Hard-to-access spots around the house
  • Pipes
  • Car wheels
  • Animal cleaning/pedicures
  • Electronics
  • Tile grout

Sustainable Alternatives

The standard toothbrush is made predominantly from plastic, which may be good for your dental routine but spells bad news for the planet. Also, standard toothbrushes come in plastic packaging, yet another burden for our environment.

The good news is that there are plenty of sustainable alternatives to your standard toothbrush. There are many eco-conscious companies at the moment creating some amazing toothbrushes that are environmentally friendly. Even major supermarket chains are getting on board with this important movement and are stocking a range of alternatives.

We recommend some of the following:

Electric Toothbrushes

Electric toothbrushes are often deemed more sustainable than your standard brush. This is due to only needing to replace the head, meaning less waste. However, we can’t accept electric toothbrush heads for recycling.

Bamboo Toothbrushes

The humble bamboo brush has become the go-to in sustainable dental care. Look for paper or cardboard packaging to ensure you’re hitting an environmentally-friendly home run with these fantastic brushes.

Most bamboo toothbrushes are fully biodegradable, meaning your dental habits won’t be affecting the planet.

Wooden Toothbrushes

These are also a simple, sustainable answer to plastic toothbrushes and are great for the environment.

Aluminium Toothbrushes

There is a great range of aluminium toothbrushes now on the market that are 100 per cent recyclable. Many of these brushes are also antibacterial, to ensure your smile is staying as healthy as possible.

Preserve Toothbrushes

Preserve toothbrushes are made from recycled plastics and have already gone through one life cycle as another product. Look out for these in your local health food store to reduce your carbon footprint.

Pig Hair Bristles

Even the bristles in your brush can have an impact on the environment. Standard brushes mostly contain nylon bristles, which is a synthetic material.

Traditionally, pig hair bristles were used in toothbrushes and have now seen a resurgence in the market. Many brushes containing pig hair bristles are fully compostable and recyclable.

Charcoal Bristles

Charcoal dental products have recently been making waves in holistic oral care circles, offering a sustainable alternative to teeth whitening.

Activated charcoal compounds have been known to whiten teeth, without causing damage to teeth and gums caused by peroxide-based treatments.

Charcoal is a naturally occurring compound that has no impact on the environment.

Protect Your Teeth and the Planet

We all want to have an amazing smile and fantastic oral health, but it doesn’t need to cost the environment.

It’s a no-brainer that plastic waste has dire consequences for our beautiful earth, taking as much as 1000 years to break down.

Coastal Dental Care is a firm believer in protecting our planet and minimising waste as much as possible. As sustainable and conscious practitioners, we believe in doing our bit where we can.

The Terracycle Oral Care Recycling Program is a way for you to contribute to reducing waste and making more eco-friendly choices.

Simply remember bringing your old toothbrushes, packaging, toothpaste tubes and floss containers in to one of our many practices. This way, you too can be a waste warrior!

Find out more about more about our recycling program and how to recycle toothbrushes at your next visit. You can also book an appointment online 24/7.