How much thought do you put into choosing a toothbrush? Most of us likely walk down the dental care aisle of our local drug store and pick up the first toothbrush we see, without giving it much thought. Or, perhaps depend on the free sample given at your last dentist appointment. However, not all toothbrushes are created equal. Choosing the right toothbrush is crucial to your overall dental health.
While using a manual toothbrush is adequate, many dentists are encouraging patients to switch to electric toothbrushes.
Benefits of Electric Toothbrushes
Many of us are taught from a young age to use a manual toothbrush and are hesitant to make the switch. However, there are many benefits to using an electric toothbrush over a manual one:
- A more thorough cleaning – Bristles on a manual toothbrush simply can’t reach into all of the crevices in our tooth. The rotating bristles on an electric toothbrush reach much further due to the combination of motion and equal pressure.This is especially helpful for children, who often miss key areas when brushing their teeth manually.
- An easier cleaning – Using an electric toothbrush is much easier than using a manual. The rotating head does all of the work for you. You simply guide it to where it needs to go.
- Fights gingivitis and gum disease – An electric toothbrush is much more effective in the fight against gingivitis. It cleans your teeth more thoroughly, and is able to reach the spaces between your teeth where food and bacteria become lodged. Frequent brushing with an electric toothbrush combined with regular flossing greatly reduces your chances of developing gingivitis and gum disease.
A more thorough, easier tooth brushing experience means better overall dental health. Electric toothbrushes are simply much better at removing plaque, tartar and all of that bad stuff that harms our teeth and causes cavities. The ultimate benefit of using an electric toothbrush is a successful dental exam!
Choosing an Electric Toothbrush
It’s important to choose the right toothbrush for your needs. Here are a few things to consider before purchasing an electric toothbrush:
- Ease of use – Your electric toothbrush should be comfortable to hold and have simple controls. It should be easy to move to the rotating bristles inside your mouth.
- Features – A helpful feature of an electric toothbrush is a timer. Some have additional settings for rotations and pulse. Some even come with apps for your smartphone!
- Power source – Some electric toothbrushes are rechargeable and some use batteries.
- Durability – Electric toothbrushes are more expensive than manuals, so it’s important to choose a trustworthy brand that will last. The dentists at Beavers Dentistry recommend the Phillips Sonicare electric toothbrush.
Tips for Using an Electric Toothbrush
Using an electric toothbrush instead of a manual is a completely different experience. For example, most of us were trained by our parents and dentist as children to brush our teeth side to side with our toothbrush. That defeats the purpose of an electric toothbrush. An electric toothbrush does all the work, so you should hold the toothbrush to teeth and gums for a moment, slide to the next area, and continue. Here are few other tips for using an electric toothbrush:
- Position it correctly – Hold the electric toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gumline, where the gums and teeth meet.
- Slide and glide – Do not vigorously move the brush. Remember, the electric toothbrush does all of the work for you!
- Don’t overload the brush with toothpaste – Only use a small amount of toothpaste. You may be accustomed to using a large dollop on a manual toothbrush, but that is not necessary when using an electric toothbrush.
- Use the timer – When brushing manually, most of us do not think of how much time we spend brushing our teeth, and quite frankly, we probably don’t brush long enough. Make use of the timer on your electric toothbrush for the best results.
Talk to Your Family Dentist
If you are considering switching to an electric toothbrush, tell your dentist at your next visit. We are happy to help you select the right one for your needs! Schedule an appointment at Beavers Dentistry in Cary by calling 919-467-0654.