Friday, February 4, 2011

Your toothbrush can kill you

OK, OK – I exaggerate. Your toothbrush won’t kill you. But can you re-catch a cold from it? Toothbrush makers suggest the answer is yes. The Colgate company website ominously warns "germs can hide in toothbrush bristles and lead to reinfection." Their advice: "Got A Cold? Change your toothbrush." If you believe Colgate, I’ve got some pristine swampland I want to sell you. According to Slate Explainer columnist Julia Felsenthal (plus the laws of biology), it’s all a bunch of malarkey. You can’t re-catch a cold "unless it's someone else's toothbrush (or someone else's cold). The idea that a toothbrush must be replaced seems designed to sell more product. Once you've been infected with a particular strain of a virus, you develop antibodies that make the likelihood of re-infection very low." Capitalism, you gotta love it. No road is too low to make a buck.

No comments:

Post a Comment