Standing in front of a rack of toothbrushes in a drugstore can be a little overwhelming. With so many choices, it can be hard to know what’s best for your teeth. One of the questions you may have is whether electronic toothbrushes are better for your dental health than manual toothbrushes.
Luckily, one of the most exhaustive studies to date was published in 2019; a study that tracked subjects over 11 years to determine the long-term effects of electronic toothbrushes vs manual ones. And according to the researchers, there was a clear winner.
Electronic toothbrushes led to healthier gums, less tooth decay, and fewer lost teeth than subjects who used manual toothbrushes. The most effective electronic toothbrushes were ones with an ‘oscillating’ feature – heads that rotate in two directions. This feature removes the most amount of plaque from your teeth and keeps gingivitis at bay.
The cost of a new electronic toothbrush might be a deterrent, but the prices of these devices have gone down considerably over the years. It’s also important to keep in mind the costs of dental care that might not be necessary with an electronic toothbrush. Paying a little more upfront can offset higher costs in the future.
Electronic toothbrushes are also a great option for individuals who have limited mobility in their hands. For people with arthritis, using a manual toothbrush can be a painful procedure, and children often don’t brush their teeth in the most optimal way. An electronic toothbrush can be much easier to hold, and it ensures an effective brushing technique every time.
If you’ve decided to purchase an electronic toothbrush, there are a few things that you will want to keep in mind. Don’t pick a toothbrush that is too large for your mouth, or you won’t be able to reach certain areas. Dentists also recommend that you choose soft bristles, as hard bristles can damage the enamel of your teeth.
Remember to pick one with an oscillating feature; some electronic toothbrushes only vibrate, and this will not get you all the benefits you need. And while you can find options for less than $20, it’s worth it to invest a little more in your teeth. To get the best care, talk to your dentist beforehand for exceptional advice that’s catered specifically for your dental health.
Whether you’re using an electronic or a manual toothbrush, to get the best results, you will want to brush your teeth for two minutes, twice a day, with fluoride toothpaste. It’s also important to floss at least once a day.
For children under the age of 7, adult supervision is recommended to make sure that they’re brushing their teeth for a full two minutes and are getting to all the hard-to-reach areas of the mouth. You should also replace your toothbrush about every three months. For an electronic toothbrush, this means simply buying a new head.
If you are using a manual toothbrush, you will want to brush in a circular motion that mimics the movements of an electronic toothbrush for the best results. And remember to talk to your dentist about any questions you may have – they can provide compassionate care whenever you need it.