Clean your mouthpieces!

posted in: Tips | 0

In our shop the technicians have their own mouthpieces to play test every instrument that they repair.  It’s a good thing too because the mouthpieces that we see in the cases are gross!!!  We often go over swabbing out woodwinds and chemically cleaning brass but the mouthpiece is very often overlooked.  Think of it this way: every time you use a fork, you put it in the dishwasher, right?  So why not clean the device that you put on your mouth for hours at a time?  It gets very dirty and the bacteria from your mouth does not go away on its own.  There are no magic case fairies that will do the dirty work for you.  Orbit gum may make your dirty mouth clean but it won’t help your mouthpiece!   Get a cotton cloth or soft bristled brush, some mild soap and put your nasty mouthpiece funk down the drain!  Flute players, don’t think you are getting off the hook because you have a headjoint not a “mouthpiece”.  Use a cotton Q-tip and clean the inside of your embouchure hole.  You don’t even realize how dirty it is!  Consider this your health PSA of the day.  Go forth and clean!