Choosing the best toothbrush for your needs may seem like a simple task, but the selection process may be more confusing than you think. A simple stroll down the dental care aisle of your local grocery store can confirm the myriad of options that are available to consumers. Nevertheless, as long as you cover the basics, finding the right toothbrush isn’t difficult. Here are a few things to look for as you shop:
A Small Head
It may seem logical that bigger would be better when it comes to a toothbrush head. After all, a larger brush head can cover a greater amount of surface area in one sweep. However, when it comes to a toothbrush, a smaller head is actually better.
A smaller head is able to navigate the tight spaces in your oral cavity. Molars may not get a thorough cleaning with a standard toothbrush head because of the restricted space in the back of the mouth. With a small toothbrush head, all of the surfaces within your mouth may be more accessible.
ADA-approved Nylon Bristles
Nowadays, all-natural products are quite popular. However, when selecting a toothbrush, nylon may be best.
The effectiveness of all -natural toothbrushes has not been substantiated by large amounts of research. On the other hand, their nylon counterparts often display the ADA seal of approval.
As a result, it is likely best to stick with nylon bristles until further notice. Natural bristles made from tree roots may do a fine job of cleaning the teeth. However, without solid proof of their effectiveness, it’s best to steer clear.
As you brush your teeth, your hands may become a bit wet and slippery. Not having a firm grip on your toothbrush as you clean your teeth can make it difficult to clean your teeth thoroughly. A non-slip toothbrush handle can make it easier to navigate the brush about your mouth.
Soft and Gentle Bristles
Stiff bristles may work well for cleaning concrete surfaces. However, tooth enamel should be treated more gently. The enamel of your teeth can be eroded by constant scrubbing with hard bristle brushes.
In addition, your gums are sensitive. Scrubbing gingival tissues with hard, stiff bristles can result in trauma to the gums. This trauma is often evidenced by gums that bleed as you brush.
Trouble navigating a manual toothbrush? Go electric.
Battery powered toothbrushes are affordable and readily available nowadays. Although electronic toothbrushes are not any better at cleaning the teeth than manual toothbrushes– as long as proper technique is observed– some people have medical conditions that make it difficult for them to maneuver a manual brush. In those instances, an electric toothbrush may be a better option.
There are many different types of electric brushes from which to choose. Some brushes have rotating bristles. Others pulsate. There are even some that offer sonic cleaning through vibrations.
If you do choose an electric brush, try to find one that suits your needs. Here are a few additional options that some brushes offer:
- A timer. Have you ever wished for a built-in two-minute alarm as you brush? Some electronic toothbrushes include a timer that simplifies counting down to the recommended two-minute mark.
- Pressure sensors. Electronic toothbrushes sometimes include pressure sensors that cause the brush bristles to stop moving when too much pressure is applied to the teeth. This built-in mechanism can help keep your gums and teeth enamel safe.
Selecting a Toothbrush for a Child
If you are choosing a toothbrush for a little one, be sure to follow the same guidelines as you would for an adult. The toothbrush head should be small enough to navigate about the child’s mouth easily. In addition, brush bristles should be extra soft for sensitive little gums. Also, if your child’s dexterity has not developed to the point where he or she can effectively brush manually, an electronic toothbrush may be best.
Additionally, it can be beneficial to choose a toothbrush that is decorated with the youngster’s favorite cartoon character or superhero. Positive associations with the toothbrush can help encourage the child to brush often.
If you are still concerned about choosing the right toothbrush, contact our office to schedule an appointment. We can help you make a great selection!