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Is it Better to Use an Electric or Manual Toothbrush?

To maintain optimal oral health at home, the general recommendation is to brush at least twice a day. However, the dizzying array of toothbrushes is enough to confuse anyone. Always a rival to manual toothbrushes, the electric toothbrush wins many consumers over, but is it the best option for you? The specialists at Carrefour Dentaire de Montréal are here to help you make the best choice.

The Pros and Cons of Electric Toothbrushes

The automatic toothbrush was introduced at the 1960 Centenary of the American Dental Association. Of course, it’s a lot more effective today. There are two terms used to describe electric brushes: Sonic and rotating.

Sonic toothbrushes look like manual toothbrushes with their oval heads. The high-speed vibration of the electric brush follows a vertical back-and-forth movement that covers most teeth. Rotating toothbrushes have smaller heads that switch between pulsations and rotations. This 3D technology follows a tilt-and-turn movement that even washes hard-to-reach areas.

The main benefit of electric toothbrushes, sonic or rotating, is how easy they are to use. Indeed, an electric brush washes your teeth for you. You don’t have to move, apart from guiding the brush along your teeth. Besides, they’re often more comfortable to use for people with arthritis and similar problems.

Furthermore, electric toothbrushes do a better job at eliminating dental plaque, as well as preventing pathogenic infections and reducing gingivitis, according to a 2010 study by the Cochrane company.

Finally, electric toothbrushes come with a lot of features. Try the different brushing modes and detachable heads to find what’s best for you. Some models have sensors that can send a signal if you’re brushing too hard, helping you control the pressure on your teeth. A helpful timer might mark the brushing time for each quadrant of your mouth.

It’s not all perfect. Electric toothbrushes are more expensive than their manual counterparts. They’re also less convenient for travel because they are heavier and need to be recharged.

The Pros and Cons of Manual Toothbrushes

With no need for batteries or chargers, the lighter manual toothbrush is more convenient for trips and travel. It’s also more affordable. Manual toothbrushes give you full control over the intensity of brushing. You’re the one who adjusts the speed and pressure to your liking. If your dentist can confirm your brushing technique is on point and you’re not pushing too hard on your teeth, a manual toothbrush should do!

Unfortunately, people with reduced mobility can struggle with the back-and-forth required by the upper arm. The extra effort can be enough to discourage some from following the requirements of oral health. Compared to electric toothbrushes, manual toothbrushes can make it difficult to take proper care of harder-to-reach areas.

What Matters Most is How You Brush Your Teeth

If you still don’t know which toothbrush to choose, don’t hesitate to ask your dentist. Keep in mind that what matters most is the way you brush your teeth. Oral hygiene depends on your habits. Don’t forget to brush the exterior, interior, and chewing surfaces of every tooth. Make sure to go from top to bottom to clean the surface of your teeth thoroughly. Try to brush your teeth for 3 minutes after breakfast and dinner.

Do you have any questions about brushing techniques or toothbrushes? Contact our Montréal dentists, they will be happy to advise you.

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