You’re probably here because you wonder if electric toothbrushes are really better than manual ones. First of all, the main job of a toothbrush is vanquishing bad bacteria that want to mess up your oral health. If not removed this bacteria becomes plaque.
Plaque is forming all the time. When not cleaned frequently enough, it leads to tooth decay and gingivitis, which is the first stage of periodontitis. Without proper treatment tooth decay and periodontitis can lead to tooth loss.
Fortunately, when topped with nice fluoride toothpaste to harden the surface of your teeth and protect against cavities, any kind of toothbrush could keep your mouth as clean as possible. It all depends on your likings and situation.
However, moving on to our topic – electric toothbrush. Let’s see what exactly are they and how could they make you invest in one:
Electric toothbrushes can be classified into two categories based on their action: vibration or rotation-oscillation. Vibration supports a technique very similar to a manual one. The rotating-oscillating version focuses on moving the brush slowly from tooth to tooth.
They could also be classified on the speed of their movements as standard power toothbrushes, sonic toothbrushes (20 Hz to 20,000 Hz) or ultrasonic toothbrushes.
If you look at the research, you’ll usually see that electric toothbrushes have a slight edge. They seem to reduce slightly more plaque in the long term. That’s especially good for avoiding gingivitis.
However, this doesn’t mean as much as you think in practice. Overall differences between manual and electric toothbrushes in such studies are pretty minimal. They don’t make an actual point of being able to maintain better oral health using a manual toothbrush and an electric one.
This would mean that the best toothbrush is whichever one you put in your hand twice a day to scrub away bacteria and plaque.
Nevertheless, even if one is not much better than the other, the individual person will use one easier. It all depends on your likings. As we mentioned there are multiple varieties of electric toothbrushes out there. Instead of relying solely on a person to scrub plaque away, electric toothbrushes generally use vibration, rotation or oscillation to get the job done.
They also usually have larger handles than manual ones. This makes the electric toothbrush a great option for people with dexterity issues, due to conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis, or aging in general.
Furthermore, since their bristles can be thinner and pointier, they can be quite helpful in delivering targeted cleaning, which can aid someone with braces or dental restorations. Also for children, the vibrations of an electric brush could catch their attention and that way helps them spend the recommended 2 minutes brushing their teeth.
Speaking of that, electric toothbrushes also have timers. That’s a nice way to make sure you give your teeth and gums the brushing they need. If you’re someone that brushes way too hard, which could lead to gum recession that causes sensitivity while eating and drinking, an electric toothbrush would be a good choice.
They do a lot to remove plaque, so putting too much pressure on your gums becomes less of an issue. In fact, some options come with sensors that stop their motion if you’re pressing too hard.
No matter of the brush you use, there’s a right and a wrong way to brush your teeth. A correct brushing technique is essential for the health of your teeth and gums. Remember to brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled brush. Its size and shape should fit your mouth and allowing you to reach all areas easily.
Replace your toothbrush every 3 months or even sooner if you see the bristles are worn out. The angle you place it to the gums should be 45-degree. Gently move the brush back and forth in short, tooth-wide, circular motions. Brush the outer surfaces, the inner surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of the teeth.
To clean the inside surfaces of the front teeth, tilt the brush vertically and move the brush in up-and-down strokes. Flossing at least once a day is important as well. It helps remove plaque and food between the teeth and under the gum line. Eat a balanced diet that limits sugary beverages and snacks.
You can also check this article for some more tips on how to choose the best toothpaste and toothbrush.
There’s no evidence that you absolutely need an electric toothbrush for great oral health, but as you can tell, it could definitely be helpful in certain situations. If it helps you stay healthy and avoid decay then it’s a good investment for sure. However, we’ve been brushing our teeth with manual toothbrushes forever and it worked just as well.
For healthy teeth, you might consider deep dental cleanings at least once a year. If you need advice on choosing the right toothbrush or if you’re concerned about your oral health contact Gallegos Family Dentistry today. Our team will take care of your smile and provide you with the best results.