Good oral hygiene is important for your teeth and your general health. While we all know that you need to brush your teeth at least twice a day, but when it’s time to buy a new toothbrush do you really know which is best for you from all the varieties?
Let’s look at five things you should consider before buying your new toothbrush.
When it comes to buying a new toothbrush, the biggest dilemma is whether to choose an electric or manual one. Well, both are good for removing plaque from your teeth, but it all depends on your technique.
Generally, studies find that electric toothbrushes are better at preventing plaque and gingivitis because they create more brush strokes in a shorter time. This is good for people that have limited mobility, such as arthritis in the hands or even those that don’t have the patience. While people worry that an electric toothbrush can damage their gums, this isn’t true if you use it properly. If this is a concern, a manual toothbrush does give you more control, which can be beneficial if you have sensitive teeth.
In the drug store, you will see a lot of oscillating toothbrushes and sonic toothbrushes. So, which one should you choose? Well, the oscillating or rotating toothbrush has bristles in a circular shape and these rotations are a lot more effective for removing plaque and preventing gingivitis, as well as reaching those hard to clean spots.
Yet, a sonic or vibrating new toothbrush can help to loosen plaque too. The vibration at high speed creates more brush strokes and even has a flossing action. But, some people can find this irritating and the tingly feeling can be uncomfortable, especially if you have sensitive teeth.
When you are choosing a new toothbrush, there are different bristle strengths you can select; namely, soft medium or hard. While they are all made of nylon, there is a difference between them.
Most people will find soft bristles the most comfortable to use and the best for cleaning their teeth. The medium and hard options can be good for people that have strong teeth, but it can be too abrasive for those with sensitive teeth. This can do more harm than good and tough bristles can damage the gums and tooth enamel. Try to choose a soft bristle toothbrush to make sure this doesn’t happen.
To practice good oral hygiene, you have got to make sure that the toothbrush you are using is clean too. Make sure that you regularly wash your toothbrush to prevent germ and micro-organisms growing that can cause infections. Always rinse it with tap water after you are finished brushing to remove any debris or toothpaste that is left over. In addition, make sure that you don’t cover your toothbrush head, as this can create a moist environment that can encourage micro-organisms to grow. Let it air-dry after use but keep it around six feet away from your toilet to avoid contamination.
The last thing you want to be doing is using an old toothbrush. After a lot of brushing, the bristles will become frayed and this can lead to damaging your gums and the inability to remove plaque properly. So, that is why the American Dental Association recommend you replace your toothbrush or electric toothbrush head every three to four months. But, this is only a guideline and you should check your toothbrush regularly to make sure that it is still good for you to use. If the bristles become frayed and worn before this time, you should still replace it.
Dr. Inna Trogan – DDS is experienced in cosmetic dentistry, periodontics, and general dentistry. An active member of the Academy of General Dentistry and the American Dental Association, Dr. Trogan continuously stays up-to-date on the latest state-of-the-art technologies and advances in dentistry. She takes personal pride in providing courteous and high quality professional treatment for all of her patients’ dental care needs.
Our dentists have served the residents of Brooklyn Heights, Fort Greene, Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill, DUMBO, and all of our other surrounding communities for years. They can be reached by phone, 718.246.5677 or at their office in 100 Pineapple Walk, Brooklyn Heights, NY 11201. You can also book an appointment online.