Thursday, January 12, 2017

Wash your mouth out.

Every year Santa finds some weird bathroom product for my stocking. Last year, I'm sure you recall, I got a small bottle of Poo-Pourri, the stuff you spray in the toilet to stop it your deposits from shriveling the hand towels.

This year I got the Steripod

These little clip-on pods are like those protective covers you put on the head of your toothbrush when you travel to protect the bristles. You always want to protect your bristles, right, boys? But these little suckers do more than just protect your bristles. I'll let the manufacturer explain:
Enclosed inside each steripod toothbrush protector is a laboratory formulated thymol compound. The compound is encapsulated in plastic with small holes that allow the thymol vapors to escape and surround your brush bristles. It's the vapors that do all the work. The entire steripod is shipped sealed in a medical quality enclosure - ensuring that the compound is not activated [by air flow] before you unwrap. All you have to do is clip the steripod on your brush! - compare to other toothbrush products and you'll love the no batteries, no socket, no hassle of steripod!
The thymol pad is supposed to last for three months, which is about when you should replace your toothbrush anyway, according to the American Dental Association. The ADA page also has a lot of information about bacteria on toothbrushes: "Toothbrushes have been shown to harbor bacteria (including fecal coliform bacteria that can be released into the air when the toilet is flushed or can be spread to the toothbrush when the owner touches a contaminated surface before handling his or her brush)." Ewwwie! Now, they do say that "there is no evidence that these bacteria cause adverse health effects," so go ahead and enjoy the fecal coliform bacteria.

Well, not me, mister!

Here is my actual toothbrush, reposing in its new Steripod like the late Michael Jackson in his hyperbaric chamber:

I guess it would be better for it to be upright, so moisture on the bristles can come down the neck. It's not airtight, nor is it supposed to be. But it does prevent the easy airflow toothbrushes normally enjoy. In fact, the design of the pod may be a problem; the ADA, those buttinskis, have this to say (emphasis added):
Rinse it with tap water to remove any remaining toothpaste and debris. Store it upright and allow it to air dry. If you store your toothbrush with other toothbrushes, make sure they are separated to prevent cross contamination. And do not routinely cover toothbrushes or store them in closed containers. A moist environment such as a closed container is more conducive to the growth of unwanted bacteria than the open air. 
Hmm. So does the Steripod prevent that because it has thymol to kill all the bacteria? I suspect they manufacturers will have a long way to go to get the coveted ADA approval seal.

Well, the toothbrush certainly smells clean. My first thought when I unwrapped the pod was, "That smells like my pediatrician's waiting room." I guess he used thymol to disinfect the place, maybe among other chemicals.

I'm already thinking way too much about my toothbrush now. I'm going to turn into Adrian Monk at this rate. The advantage for my bathroom is, between the Steripod killing airborne fecal coliform bacteria and the Poo-Pourri proactively killing odors, it'll be like no one ever poops in there.

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