Tips On How to Choose the Right Toothbrush
Have you ever heard the phrase “a workman is only as good as his tools”? This is especially true when it comes to your dental hygiene. Your overall health is strongly linked to your oral health, and using the right toothbrush is the first step in optimizing your dental routine. However, toothbrushes aren’t a one-size-fits-all solution, we are all unique and have different preferences and needs.
With so many options down the aisle finding the right toothbrush can be overwhelming. Our Calgary Dental experts have curated a comprehensive guide to help you find the perfect toothbrush for you and your family!
Bristle Types: Soft, Medium or Hard?
The bristle firmness is one of the most important aspects of choosing the right toothbrush. You might think that the harder the bristle, the better it cleans; however, this is not the case. Hard and medium bristles and heavy pressure can damage your gums and scratch the enamel around your teeth. The Canadian Dental Association (CDA) recommends soft bristles as it is safer, more effective and ideal for all ages.
Ideally, the size of your toothbrush head should be small enough to maneuver into all areas of your mouth including those that are hard to reach. It’s best to avoid toothbrushes that are too wide as they can make it difficult to fully brush around your back molars.
Similarly, small children and babies need smaller toothbrushes to accommodate their smaller mouths. At a young age, we are taught to brush our teeth twice a day, while we see it as a mundane activity, you can make it fun for the little ones. This helps encourage them to get into a habit of brushing often. When you go to the store, let them pick out their own toothbrush, kids’ toothbrushes come in all colours, and shapes and even include some of their favorite characters. This can instil a fun element in a routine task!
What Handle Should I choose?
Your toothbrush handle should feel comfortable and have a secure grip. If you or someone in your family have mobility issues an electric toothbrush might be ideal. It requires less effort and the self-moving bristles do the hard work so you don’t have to. The most important aspect of the handle is that it is easy to maneuver so you can comfortably reach all areas of your mouth, bent handles can assist with that as the shape makes it easier to reach all angles of your teeth.
When to Replace Your Toothbrush?
Studies have shown that new toothbrushes remove 30% more plaque when compared to older toothbrushes. Calgary dentists recommend replacing your toothbrush every three months or when your toothbrush is frayed or after recovering from the cold. On average you should go through four toothbrushes a year, if you can’t remember the last time you replaced your toothbrush, that is a good sign that it needs replacing.
We also recommend purchasing reputable brand name toothbrushes, cheaper no-name brand toothbrushes do not go through the same manufacturing standards when compared to brand name brushes. Remember, you aren’t just investing in a toothbrush, you are investing in your family’s overall health!
Manual or Electric?
Both types of toothbrushes are effective when it comes to removing plaque and cleaning your teeth. However, studies have shown that electric toothbrushes remove 11% more plaque when compared to manual toothbrushes. This does not mean we should all throw away our manual toothbrushes, with the correct technique and consistent use, manual toothbrushes perform just as well, so at the end of the day, it all depends on personal preference, for example:
Electric toothbrushes are ideal for those with mobility issues like carpal tunnel or arthritis. It can also make brushing your teeth more fun for kids, the smaller head sizes also make it ideal for smaller mouths as it allows you to reach those hard-to-get spots.
Alternatively, manual toothbrushes get the job done at a fraction of the cost. They are also more accessible as you can find them in grocery stores, pharmacies and online.
At the end of the day, the best toothbrush is the one you will use consistently every day. Talk to one of our Chinook Mall Family Dental experts if you have any further questions about your toothbrush.
At our Calgary Dental Clinic, we provide teeth cleaning solutions to brighten up your smile! Contact us today and schedule your teeth cleaning appointment with Dr. Stewart Charchuk. Just like your dental routine, make a habit of scheduling dental appointments twice a year. Call us at 403.252.7711 or visit us online to ensure your smile lasts for years to come!