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A Dentist’s Take on Manual vs. Electric Toothbrushes

October 15, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — tntadmin @ 9:11 pm

toothpaste going on manual brushAs your trusted dentist, one of the most common questions we get is whether or not electric toothbrushes are really all that much better. In this week’s blog post, we put manual vs. electric toothbrushes up side by side to see which one comes out ahead. The answer may surprise you!

Manual Brushes: Pros and Cons

A manual toothbrush can definitely achieve the same level of clean as an electric brush, depending on how well you use it. Most people do not manage to brush for the recommended two minutes, twice a day. Once they make the upgrade to an electric toothbrush, they realize they were maybe doing half that. Other people make the mistake of thinking they get an extra-good clean when they brush in hard, back and forth strokes — and they just end up damaging their sensitive gum tissue instead.

But for people who set a timer as they brush and always clean in gentle, circular motions, a manual toothbrush is just fine. In fact, it can offer several benefits that an electric brush just can’t. Like affordability — you can get a pack of soft-bristled brushes for less than you’ll spend on a cup of coffee tomorrow morning. Manual brushes are also more portable, meaning they are usually more convenient for people who travel a lot.

Electric Brushes: Pros and Cons

A manual brush can do just fine — but most people can benefit from the extra help an electric toothbrush provides. This option comes with a built-in timer to help ensure you brush your teeth for two minutes every time (assuming you finish the cycle). And because the head spins or pulsates on its own, there is also a reduced risk of brushing too hard and injuring your gum tissue.

Electric toothbrushes do come at a much higher cost, but they are getting more affordable each year. You can probably get a fine one for less than $50, but the top-of-the-line electric toothbrushes fall in the $75-$150 range. Given their significant benefits for oral hygiene, though, it’s worth the investment for people who can make it.

Which Is Right for You?

Plenty of people get along just fine with a manual toothbrush. If you haven’t ever had a cavity and are not at a high risk of gum disease, you probably don’t need to upgrade. But if you know you have a problem with tartar buildup and have already had a number of cavities, or if you smoke, then investing in an electric toothbrush may be a wise choice. By reducing your risk of getting tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health hazards, going electric can help you have easier checkups and cleanings and save money over the long term.

About the Author

Dr. Alex Martin is a trusted source of comprehensive dental care for Scottsdale friends and families of all ages. To learn more about his general, restorative, or cosmetic treatments, or to schedule an appointment for you or someone you love, do not hesitate to get in touch with the office at 480-860-1993.  

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