With so many toothbrush shapes, sizes and styles on the market, deciding which kind to buy can be confusing. Perhaps you have a steady fave bought out of habit, or maybe you’re always on the lookout for a sale, jumping from toothbrush to toothbrush when the price is right. Or you choose according to aesthetics, considering the handle’s colour before any other attributes. All of these strategies will get you a toothbrush, but none gets you the best one for the job.
Tips on How to Choose the Right Toothbrush
According to a survey by the Academy of General Dentistry, one in three dentists report that brushing the teeth with too much force is the biggest cause of tooth sensitivity.
Many people think all that elbow grease using a hard or medium-bristled toothbrush gets the teeth cleaner, but in reality, it does more harm than good. Hard and medium-bristled toothbrushes alone can cause bleeding or receding gums and wear down the enamel to expose the dentin, and that’s what causes sensitivity.
Rule of thumb when it comes to a soft vs medium or hard toothbrush: soft is always best, and soft bristles are just as effective as cleaning the teeth. A soft-bristled brush lets you apply enough pressure to remove plaque, but not so much pressure that you wear down tooth enamel or brush away gum tissue.
Make sure the toothbrush has a head size that fits comfortably in your mouth. If the head is too big, it will be difficult to reach the back teeth, where bacteria can thrive. Therefore a toothbrush with a smaller head is the preferred choice.
Cheaper is not always better – Five no-name toothbrushes in a package may seem like a steal at a handful of pennies each, but consider the risks. The product could be from a manufacturer who doesn’t care about safety or efficacy. The toothbrushes could be made of inferior or even unsafe materials. Seeing as you put a toothbrush in your mouth two or more times per day, it’s worth going with a reputable manufacturer. Leave the cheap ones on the shelf; they’re better suited for cleaning grout than oral hygiene.
For many, an electric toothbrush is a good alternative. It can do a better job of cleaning teeth, particularly for those who have difficulty brushing or who have limited manual dexterity.
When it comes to the type of handle (such as non-slip grip or flexible neck), the shape of the head (tapered or rectangular) and style of bristles (such as rippled, flat or trimmed to a dome shape), pick whatever is most comfortable for you. The best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily.
Change your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months, before the bristles start to fan out, and any time after you’ve been sick.
For various toothbrush options from manual to electric, visit Corne Smith Dentistry in Cape Town Claremont, where our team can assist you in making the right choice.