• 20 SEP 17
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    Are Electric Toothbrushes Worth It?

    Man chooses between an electric and a manual toothbrush isolated

    Are Electric Toothbrushes Worth It?

    Before the days of electric toothbrushes, the biggest decision you had to make was whether to buy soft, medium, or hard bristles—and what color you wanted the handle to be. With high-tech electric toothbrushes taking the dental care world by storm, now you must decide: are electric toothbrushes worth the extra cost? Consider the added benefits of using an electric toothbrush, some of the drawbacks, and how to select the best model if you decide an electric toothbrush is right for you.

    Benefits of Electric Toothbrushes

    • More strokes per minute equal better cleaning power: When you brush manually, you make about 300 strokes per minute. Manual toothbrushes are capable of thousands, sometimes tens of thousands, of strokes per minute. This allows for superior plaque removal for a brighter smile and a lower chance of cavities and gum disease.
    • Ease of use: It’s easy to use an electric toothbrush because you simply guide it across your teeth while it performs the brushing action for you. Once you grow accustomed to the vibration, which may tickle at first, most people agree that electric toothbrushes are easier to use than manual ones.

    Drawbacks of Electric Toothbrushes

    • Higher cost: Regular toothbrushes cost a few dollars, but many electric models run $100 or more. Replacement heads are also more expensive than buying an ordinary toothbrush, so the long-term costs are definitely higher. However, if an electric toothbrush saves you from tooth and gum problems, the investment pays for itself!
    • Power required: You must keep on top of recharging your electric toothbrush so it doesn’t run out of power when you need it most.
    • Bulkier design: The internal battery pack makes electric toothbrushes larger than their manual counterparts. This makes traveling with your toothbrush a little trickier.

    Who Should Use an Electric Toothbrush?

    Many people can benefit from using an electric toothbrush, including:

    • Children: Special electric toothbrushes for kids make it easier and more fun to brush their teeth.
    • People with braces: The rotating or side-to-side motion of an electric toothbrush head makes it highly effective for cleaning food particles from around the brackets and wires.
    • People with arthritis: Is brushing your teeth a painful endeavor? Get extra help from an electric toothbrush.
    • People prone to tartar buildup: When brushing doesn’t adequately remove plaque from your teeth, it hardens and darkens into tartar. With an electric toothbrush’s superior brushing action, you can remove plaque before it has a chance to stain your teeth.

    Types of Electric Toothbrushes

    As you shop for an electric toothbrush, you may come across these different styles:

    • Rotary: The head moves in a circular motion at about 3,000 to 7,500 strokes per minute.
    • Rotation oscillation: The head moves in a circular motion and alternates directions with each stroke.
    • Sonic: The head moves in a side-to-side motion at about 30,000 strokes per minute.
    • Ultrasonic: The super-fast side-to-side motion vibrates to dislodge and sweep plaque away.
    • Ionic: The head doesn’t move. Instead, you brush manually while a low electric current in the bristles attracts plaque.

    How to Choose the Right Electric Toothbrush

    There isn’t enough research to definitively say which type of electric toothbrush is best, so choose the style that your dentist recommends for your situation. Make sure the label includes the American Dental Association seal, meaning it has been reviewed for safety and effectiveness.

    Then, consider which of these features are most important to you and find a toothbrush that suits your needs:

    • Brushing modes for sensitive teeth, gum care, massage, and more
    • Built-in timers that pause or beep every 30 seconds to tell you to move to a new quadrant of your mouth
    • Sensors that signal when you’re brushing too hard
    • A digital reminder to replace your brush head after a certain number of uses
    • Included travel case
    • Included UV sanitizing light
    • Multiple brush head compatibility, so you can choose the style you like best
    • Bluetooth technology that sends information about your brushing habits to your Smartphone

    Don’t Forget to Set Dental Appointments

    Whether you opt for a manual or electric toothbrush, don’t forget the importance of regular dental appointments to keep your teeth looking their best. We can help you decide whether an electric toothbrush is a smart choice for you and recommend a specific brand we trust.

    To learn more, or to schedule your next appointment, please call Dr. Evanson today at (720) 409-0008 or contact us online.

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