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My dentist is a giving person, and I received my bag full of goodies this AM, including my free plastic toothbrush. I know there are alternatives, and I actually normally use a toothbrush with replaceable brush. Still, I wonder how many plastic toothbrushes end up in the waste stream from free promos like this…millions worldwide? I wish dentists could set a good example with regard to plastics.
Most dentists give away toothbrushes, floss, etc. because they receive them from Colgate or another company. The company wins because their name is out there with an implied endorsement by the dentist. The dentist will not be offended if you refuse the “gift.” If you have accumulated a lot of unwrapped, unused items, you can donate them to homeless shelters – they would really appreciate them. A lot of churches also collect supplies like this to hand out to those in need. Or you could offer them on Freecycle. Even though they do not appeal to you because they are a disposable plastic product, they can be very useful to people in need.
My dentist also gave me a sample “matchbook” of those once – called StimuDent and so handy to have. They fit between my tightly spaced teeth better than any toothpick. I later got a commercial 12-pack, unfortunately packaged in one plastic wrapper. And I have gently refused the usual plastic bag of goodies with no hurt feelings on their part; I think they were happy to have it to give to someone else.
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