A "regular" manual toothbrush is an excellent tool for cleaning your teeth as long as you are thorough about brushing and use proper techniques for cleaning your smile.
- Place the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gums.
- Gently move the brush in a circular motion across the teeth.
- Remember to brush the outer surfaces, the inner surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of the teeth.
If you brush properly, as outlined above, and both you and your dentist are satisfied with the state of your oral health, then you’re doing great! There’s no need for any additional tools (other than floss, of course; use that once a day!).
If you struggle to brush all of your teeth sufficiently when using a manual toothbrush, or if you and your dentist feel that your hygiene routine could use a boost, an electric toothbrush may be an appropriate alternative.
How can an electric toothbrush help?
Electric toothbrushes that have small, round, rotating heads mimic the ideal brushing motion. Avoid electric toothbrushes that make a sawing motion if you can.
Electric toothbrushes can make brushing easier since you hardly have to do any work. Just apply your toothpaste to your electric toothbrush, place it against your teeth and turn it on. All you have to do then is gently guise it over all of your tooth surfaces.
You won't need to perform the brushing motion yourself, making it much easier to clean the back of your front teeth (which can be a bit awkward with a manual brush) and the small head can make cleaning the back molars and other tight or hard-to-recah spots much easier too.
And because the head spins so quickly, electric toothbrushes can do a great job of removing surface stains from your teeth. Some electric toothbrushes even have timers so that you know when your full two minutes are up!
Overall, an electric toothbrush can help you brush more thoroughly, and may even make brushing feel like less of a chore.
Concerns about brushing too hard?
Some people hesitate to try an electric toothbrush because they are concerned it would not be gentle on the enamel of their teeth, or their gums.
Many users of electric toothbrushes find that using this tooth actually helps them to brush their teeth more gently since they don't have to make the scrubbing motion themselves. Scrubbing tends to make you want to apply pressure, and this is a non-issue with an electric toothbrush, as it performs the motion for you.
If you are worried about brushing too hard and wearing down your teeth or gums, many electric toothbrushes sell brush heads with soft brustles for sensitive teeth and gums that will help to mitigate any wear caused by pressing too hard when brushing.