The basis of a healthy oral hygiene routine involves brushing your teeth daily. Dr. Joshua Kennedy’s patients at Turnagain Dental often want to know whether electric or manual toothbrushes are better at removing plaque and bacteria and keeping teeth clean and healthy.
According to the American Dental Association (ADA), it is not the brush that’s important — it’s the person doing the brushing. Ultimately, the best toothbrush is the one you are most likely to use every day.
With that said, electric toothbrushes have some unique benefits that you might want to consider taking advantage of.
Advantages of Electric Toothbrushes
Electric toothbrushes have vibrating, rotating or pulsing bristles that help to remove plaque and bacteria from the teeth and gums. When using an electric toothbrush, you simply hold the brush against your individual teeth and move it along your gumline while the bristles do all the work.
This is a great benefit if you have hand arthritis, carpal tunnel or other dexterity problems that make it difficult to brush with a manual toothbrush.
Electric toothbrushes are also quite helpful if you have orthodontic appliances. Many people with braces find it easier to keep their teeth clean with an electric toothbrush.
Another advantage of electric brushes is that many have a timer to let you know when you have brushed for long enough (the ADA recommends two minutes, twice a day). That way, you are not tempted to take shortcuts.
Are There Any Downsides to Electric Toothbrushes?
While electric toothbrushes are useful and convenient, they are also more expensive than manual brushes. They can vary widely in price, depending on the exact technology and features of the toothbrush. Also, you have to account for the cost of replacement heads, and it may not always be easy to find the brand of replacement brush head you need at your local store.
Importantly, electric toothbrushes need power to work as designed. Depending on the model you choose, you might need to replace the batteries of your toothbrush, which is an additional expense. In some scenarios (e.g., if you travel frequently), it might be challenging to keep them properly charged.
Learn More about Your Oral Health from Turnagain Dental
Remember that using proper brushing technique and brushing regularly are more important to your oral health than whether you use an electric or manual toothbrush. Also, your oral hygiene routine should include flossing daily and seeing a dentist at least twice a year for preventative care.
For more information about maintaining good oral health, or to schedule your next dental visit, please contact Dr. Kennedy and the team at Turnagain Dental today.