If you’ve been reading our recurring series of dental products blogs, you’ve probably noticed a theme. There are lots of dental products out there—so many that choosing can be overwhelming at times. The key, as with dental flosses and toothpastes, is choosing a product that’s right for you and that you’ll use regularly.
So how do you know which toothbrush is right for you? Here are a few things to consider the next time you find yourself standing in the oral health products aisle at your local Itasca, IL store.
Manual vs. Electric
Let’s be honest. This is the biggest question about toothbrushes out there. It’s the “Tupac or Biggie” debate of oral hygiene. And just like you can duck that question by saying something like, “Biggie for flow and Tupac for lyrics,” there’s really not a definitive answer for the manual vs. electric question.
If you’re willing to spend the money, not just on the brush itself, but also on the replacement heads, then an electric toothbrush will probably do a better job than a manual one. A review of 56 studies through 2011 revealed that on average, people who used powered toothbrushes had 21% less plaque after three months’ use.
However, if you don’t brush all quadrants of your mouth, both the inside and the outside surfaces of your teeth, it doesn’t matter how high-powered of a toothbrush you use. Spots you miss will be at risk of tooth decay.
Soft or Hard Bristles
Whether you’re using a manual brush or an electric, you have a choice as to what type of bristles you use. If your gums or teeth are sensitive, you should definitely choose soft bristles. There’s no real reason to use a hard bristle toothbrush; they don’t last longer than soft or medium bristles, and they can damage your gums.
There are loads of other features that toothbrushes offer: angled bristles, bristles that change colors when they need to be replaced, special grips, ergonomic shapes… the list goes on and on. All of these features can be useful. Angled bristles can get to hard-to-reach spots between your teeth, but you still need to floss.
Bristles that change colors can help remind you to replace your toothbrush every two to three months, like you should.
If a comfortable grip will help you brush for two minutes every time, then by all means, get a toothbrush with a comfortable grip.
The key to good oral health is good hygiene habits, so whatever toothbrush you choose, make sure to use it twice a day, for two minutes at a time!