Dental hygiene is a preventive measure to prevent and control diseases, and tooth brushing is the most efficient mechanical method for removing biofilm. The aim of the present study was to analyze the care of children with or without special needs in relation to the maintenance and physical condition of the brushes in relation to stiffness, deformities and the presence of residues. The cross-sectional study, using a questionnaire and visual inspection of the brushes, assessed the knowledge of 60 children without special needs and 60 children with special needs in relation to care after using a toothbrush and visual analysis of toothbrushes. The results showed no statistically significant difference in relation to previous knowledge about toothbrush care if they have already received instructions on toothbrush care, replacement periodicity, storage, brush head size, bristle deformities and presence of residues. There was a statistical difference in relation to the bristle stiffness in which the group of children with special needs used more hard bristles than the children without special needs. The present study concludes that children with special needs use harder bristles than children without special needs and that there is no difference between prior knowledge of the maintenance of toothbrushes with the periodicity of exchange, storage, brush head size, deformities of the toothbrushes, bristles and the presence of waste from children with and without special needs.