Cockroaches are attracted to your toothbrush when you fail to wash and let it dry after use. They will crawl on a dirty brush with food particles and toothpaste trapped in its bristles if they are hungry. A damp toothbrush can also invite thirsty roaches since they also drink water if the environment becomes hot.
Roaches can eat toothpaste but they do not enjoy its taste in all brands. However, that does not mean they will stay away from a toothbrush because the paste is tasteless. Those bugs can feed on almost anything when they lack food.
As the world evolves, different pastes have unique ingredients formulated for different purposes. For example, adults, herbal, kids, smokers, and sensitive toothpaste all taste differently. Some will attract roaches to your toothbrush faster while others may repel them.
In this article:
Can toothpaste kill roaches
Toothpaste can kill roaches if they eat it in large quantities because it contains fluoride. When they consume fluoride, it will mix with fluids in them and release hydrogen fluoride (HF). HF is an acid that can cause internal burns in a roach which can kill them when a good amount is consumed.
Even though hydrogen fluoride in toothpaste is classified under acids that are not very strong, it can affect roaches. It gives off ions just like any other acid which is enough to dissolve the bugs’ internal cells. A toothpaste’s fatality rate on roaches will depend on the type and amounts consumed.
When the bathroom is extra clean, roaches are likely to crawl on your toothbrush. After brushing your teeth, the toothbrush can give off a scent from what you ate. This depends on how fast you brush, clean, and the type of toothpaste used.
Roaches only eat toothpaste out of desperation when they cannot find their favorite meals. You cannot find them going for paste while there is meat or fish around. Some toothpaste also gives off sweet scents that confuse roaches for food and this is why they end up eating them.
How to keep roaches off toothbrush
keep cockroaches from your toothbrush by washing its bristles with plenty of warm water after use. Store it in a closed ventilated toothbrush holder. If cockroaches crawl on your brush, combine 1/2 cup of water with 1 teaspoon of baking soda. Then soak the toothbrush in it for 15-30minutes to disinfect it.
Watch how you keep your toothbrush because keeping it in a closed holder that is an airtight holder can encourage mold. Using a mold-infested brush daily can result in unwanted infections. A closed holder protects your brush from roaches but leaves it with high chances of mold at the bristles’ base.
How far should you keep your toothbrush from the toilet? Here is a quick answer. Keep it as far as possible once you notice your bathroom is infested. When getting rid of roaches, remove your brush from the restroom until all of them are gone.
Avoid keeping your brush close to the toilet seat since bugs sometimes infest those. Roaches hide in toilet bowls and come out when looking for alternative food sources. If your brush is kept near the toilet seat, it will crawl and eat the toothpaste residues on it.
Keep it dry and clean
A constantly damp toothbrush invites roaches and other bacterial infections. After using it, wash and keep it in a well-ventilated area. Position it in a cup in a way that the bristles are facing up so that it is well dried. Leave it near the bathroom window or open space so that air circulates in the bristles.
Consider keeping your toothbrush away from the washroom if there is poor air circulation. Find a good position in your bedroom or anywhere else in the house where the brush can be easily accessible and well aerated. In case you want a cockroach-proof brush holder, get one that is well aerated so that the brush doe not remain constantly damp.
A permanent solution for roaches that will keep roaches off your toothbrush is to ensure that the sink or the storage area is free from infestation. Take time and look for signs of an infestation. Check for roach droppings, eggs, and dirt from their fallen wings.
Once you have verified that there is an infestation, take the necessary measures to ensure that they are all eliminated. You can either seek professional help or use DIY solutions if the infestation is not a serious one. However, choose the right one since roaches live in bathtubs and drains. They multiply very fast and your own solutions may fail to control them.
What if a cockroach crawls on your toothbrush?
Once you confirm that a roach has crawled on your brush, pour 2 ounces of mouthwash into a cup. Dip the toothbrush into the cup and fill it with hot water until the bristles are covered. Let it soak for at least 30 minutes or more. Then remove, rinse and let it dry naturally in a well-ventilated area.
If you do not have any mouthwash in the house, you can use baking soda for roaches. Simply soak the toothbrush in 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 1/2 spoon of white vinegar, and 1/2 cup of water for 30-60 minutes. You may also let it sit in the solution overnight if there is no agency.
Do not forget to always rinse your brush with plenty of water before use. This helps in removing germs or infections from bugs or fruit flies in the bathroom that land on it. If possible, wash your toothbrush at least 2-3 times a week with hot water salty water to disinfect it.
Some people may opt for throwing away a toothbrush that a roach has crawled on. Well, this can also work but what if your storage area is infested and roaches crawl on your brush daily? This can end up being costly because you may have to buy new brushes every other day.
Roaches on your toothbrush may possibly leave traces of their saliva and stools on the bristles. Based on a study by the EPA on roach contamination, those bugs can transmit bacteria like salmonella which can cause diarrhea and stomach upsets. This is why you should never use any toothbrush if you roaches on it.