Walking down the dental care aisle of your local store can be pretty overwhelming, but trying to decide which toothbrush to purchase can be just as taxing. Are there really that many differences? Is one style of toothbrush better than the other? Keeping your specific needs in mind and a few best practices can definitely make your dental care purchase less stressful. Keep reading to learn what you should consider when it’s time to replace your toothbrush.
Which is Better: Manual or Electric?
First, it is important to decide whether you’d like to purchase a manual or an electric toothbrush. The American Dental Association has found that both styles are sufficient in the removal of plaque, so it truly just comes down to your preferences and needs.
Electric Toothbrushes: Studies have found electric toothbrushes to be better at cleaning your teeth and gums than manual brushes. Many of them have built-in timers to help you brush for the recommended 2 minutes, and if you have conditions like rheumatoid arthritis or carpal tunnel, they can be incredibly helpful in managing your dental hygiene.
Manual Toothbrushes: Some prefer manual toothbrushes to electric because they are so much easier to find and tend to be much more cost effective. They range in price from $1 to $5 and can commonly be found in grocery stores, drug stores and even gas stations. If you need a specific bristle style, you are much more likely to find them in a manual brush than you would with an electric toothbrush head.
Does Toothbrush Size Matter?
The short answer to this question is yes. Selecting the right toothbrush size will make it easier for you to clean your teeth and gums properly. If the head of a toothbrush juts into your jawbone, you can trust that it is too big for your mouth. Another point to remember is that you are not confined to only using adult toothbrushes. If adult toothbrush heads tend to be too big, try a youth-sized brush instead. The only real differences between a youth and adult toothbrushes are the size and possibly the decoration. Both brushes are effective in the removal of plaque, bacteria and debris when used properly.
What Kind of Bristles Work Best?
When considering how clean they want their teeth to be, most people believe medium or hard bristles are best for removing stains and hardened plaque, but this is a common misconception. Most dentists will recommend that you purchase soft bristles because they are more flexible and can reach the bacteria and plaque that hide below the gum line. Medium or hard bristled toothbrushes can damage your gums or possibly end up brushing away your enamel, resulting in tooth sensitivity.
Regardless of what style of toothbrush you choose, replacing it every 3 to 4 months is important to the effectiveness of your dental care routine. You should also make sure that you are brushing for 2 minutes twice a day and flossing at least once a day (twice is better). If you have more specific questions about selecting a toothbrush, like which brand you should buy and where to purchase it, your dentist in Canton can help you make the right choice for you.
About the Author
At Robison Dental Group, Dr. J.D. Robison is dedicated to helping patients achieve the healthy, beautiful smiles they deserve. He takes special care to listen to his patients and provides customized, comprehensive dental treatments. Dr. Robison completed the core curriculum at the prestigious Dawson Center for Advanced Dental Studies and is a member of the International Academy of Comprehensive Esthetics, the Dental Organization of Conscious Sedation and more. If it is time to visit the dentist and you are looking to learn the best way to improve your oral health at home, visit the website or contact the office at ( to book your appointment with Dr. Robison today.