Cleaning your teeth regularly takes time and discipline. Finding the best toothbrush will help make this task easier. Maybe a powered electric toothbrush is best for your needs. Or perhaps a regular manual toothbrush is better.
Picking a powered toothbrush without knowing what exactly it will help you achieve is a mistake. In this report, we’ll look at the benefits of an electric toothbrush and list out reasons for buying one. After going through it you will have a good idea of which is the best toothbrush for you.
Your Best Toothbrush : Manual or Electric?
Several scientific studies have tried to answer the question of which toothbrush is best – a manual toothbrush or a powered electric one. In a paper reporting on over 40 studies, three-quarters of them indicated that electric toothbrushes were better and only 2 suggested that manual brushing produced better outcomes.
But it’s hard to believe what these studies report – because there’s so much variation in how these trials and experiments were carried out. Unless the subjects being studied are similar to the population at large, the results from such trials cannot be applied to a wider audience.
And then, some reports are heavily biased in favor of sponsors who want the outcomes to be favorable for products they manufacture. Sifting out these papers from others is important to draw reliable conclusions about the best toothbrush.
Why Are Electric Toothbrushes Better?
An extensive analysis published by Yacob in 2014 found that electric toothbrushes are more effective than manual ones at removing plaque and treating gingivitis (gum inflammation), both in the short and long term. Plaque decreased by 10% in the first month of using an electric toothbrush and further went down by 30% by the sixth month.
So what are the specific advantages that make a powered device your best toothbrush choice?
1. Electric toothbrushes are more effective
When compared against manual brushing for half to six minutes, an electric toothbrush was more effective at cleaning teeth and removed more dental plaque, even with shorter durations of brushing.
Although you can get excellent results from manual brushing, it is apparent from these results that you will have to brush for a longer duration. If your routine allows for a certain fixed time period to brush teeth, you’ll get better results if you use an electric toothbrush.
2. The best toothbrush does all the work for you
Like any power-tool, electric brushes achieve effective results – without much effort on your part. All you have to do is turn on the device and move it around your mouth. The only thing to concentrate upon is how long you hold the brush in contact with the teeth in each quadrant.
3. You’ll be able to brush for more time
With a manual toothbrush, you will find it harder to brush your teeth for the required duration. Ideally you must brush twice a day for 3 minutes each. But most people don’t meet this standard, mainly because they don’t even realize how long they’ve been brushing. The best toothbrush is one which takes care of this – automatically. Electric toothbrushes with in-built timers solve this problem.
The Best Toothbrush For Special Situations
Under certain circumstances, your choice of the best toothbrush will depend on which type, brand and model match your unique needs. Some such situations are:
* People wearing dental braces or clips
It’s more difficult to clean your teeth while wearing fixed appliances or braces. Bristles on a toothbrush may snag on the device, resulting in incomplete brushing. An electric toothbrush can deliver better results. Without proper brushing, you can develop gum problems (gingivitis), tooth discoloration and caries.
* Gum disease and sensitive teeth
Oral hygiene is improved in those with gum (periodontal) disease while using electric toothbrushes. The best toothbrush is one which removes plaque, lowers bacterial count and improves gum health. These benefits should continue into the long term also.
* Previous dental surgery
The best toothbrush under such conditions will depend upon the nature of surgery and the current state of your teeth. Some users have conditions that make any type of brushing a challenge. Pits, cracks and cavities in teeth or bridges and implants can require a special type of toothbrush.
* Stained teeth
Powered toothbrushes are better at stain removal. As the high-intensity brush strokes work on stained segments of your teeth, it gets rid of the discoloration over time. By holding the brush for a little longer over such areas, you’ll gradually notice improvement.
* Elderly users with poor manual control
People with chronic disease and debility, or at extremes of age, may not be able to control manual toothbrushes well enough to maintain good oral health. An electric toothbrush gives them greater control with less effort. Feature-rich toothbrushes with changeable intensity settings are better for these users.
Elderly people living alone by themselves can clean their teeth independently and more effectively. It can be the best toothbrush even for those with caregivers as the task becomes more convenient.
* Plaque in places that are inaccessible
Some parts of your mouth are hard to reach using conventional manual toothbrushes. It is in these circumstances that the ‘non-contact brushing‘ effect of electric brushes has a big advantage and achieves good results.
In the ultimate analysis there’s no categorical “best toothbrush” for all situations. What may be reasonably considered the best toothbrush under one set of conditions may not apply for another.
So if you don’t like the idea of using an electric toothbrush, there’s no reason to feel compelled to buy one. But if there are significant benefits to using one, you shouldn’t hold back – and get the best toothbrush for your needs.
See our ULTIMATE Electric Toothbrush Buyer's Guide - and make an informed and smart choice.