Most people know that they should brush their teeth twice a day and also use floss and mouthwash for a complete oral care routine. While you've probably been performing the same dental care steps every day for most of your life, there are some other dental-related steps you should be taking at least once every three months in order to get the most out of your daily routine. Here are three dental tips that should pop into your mind every time the seasons change.

Throw Away That Nasty Toothbrush

If you typically do not replace your toothbrush until you get a new one directly from your dental services professional every 6 months, you are waiting way too long for a replacement. Toothbrushes can wear down within a couple of months and over time, those little bristles will become caked in bacteria. It could get to the point that you are actually doing your mouth more harm than good by repeatedly using an old brush. All of that bacteria could even cause you to catch a cold if left unchecked.

Check All Expiration Dates

If you are replenishing your toothpaste, toothbrush, dental floss and mouthwash every 3 months or so, you won't need to worry about this step. But if it's been a while since you've checked the date on that bulk size mouthwash that's been sitting in the back of your cabinet forever, you should use the changing of the seasons to get into the habit of checking up on every important item within your oral care routine. Badly expired mouthwash or toothpaste might not be very effective after a certain point or could even prove to be a health hazard.

Schedule an Appointment or Move One Up If Needed

To be clear, we're not saying you need to see a dental services professional every 3 months. Most dentists will tell you that every 6 months is proficient. But if you have an appointment scheduled and it is still 3 months away, you are under no obligation to wait for that date if you notice a problem in your mouth. Every time you replace your toothbrush, take a few moments to think about how well you've maintained your oral care routine and whether or not you are experiencing any oral pain. If you do have a problem, it's worth calling your dentist to see if your appointment can be moved up. A cavity filling today could easily turn into a crown or root canal if you wait another 3 months to get help.

While maintaining a proper daily oral care routine is important, it's a good idea to take a step back and look at the bigger picture every few months. Replace your toothbrush every 2 to 3 months, keep an eye on all expiration dates and don't be shy about moving up your next dental checkup if you start to feel a problem developing.