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Are Electric Toothbrushes Really Better? Pros & Cons

When used properly, manual toothbrushes are very efficient at cleaning your teeth.  But what about all the hype centered around electric toothbrushes?  Are they really all they’re cracked up to be? Let’s find out.

The Benefits of An Electric Toothbrush

Our Mesa, AZ dentist feels that there really are a lot of advantages to using an electric toothbrush versus a manual one. Some of the benefits include:

  • More Effective

The oscillating or vibrating movement of an electric toothbrush is more effective at removing plaque than the back and forth or circular motion of a manual toothbrush.

  • Applies the Correct Amount of Pressure

Many people bear down too hard while brushing their teeth with a manual toothbrush. This can cause gum recession and sensitive teeth. With an electric device, the right amount of pressure is applied by lightly holding the brush in your hand.

  • Great for People with Limited Mobility

Since electric toothbrushes are easy to maneuver and they do most of the cleaning for you, they are a beneficial tool with people who have limited hand mobility.

  • Timers Provide Increased Awareness

Most electric toothbrushes have built-in timers which help increase the length of time you spend brushing.  When brushing, you should focus on each quadrant of the mouth for 30 seconds at a time, for a total of two minutes.

Your electric toothbrush will help you keep track of this time and keep you aware by alerting you every 30 seconds.  When you hear the prompt, you should move onto the next area of your mouth. After two minutes, it will automatically shut off.

  • Helpful Apps Are Available

In a world surrounded by advanced technology, your electric toothbrush is no exception.  Some of these devices are Bluetooth compatible and paired with an app that helps you keep track of your brushing habits.

For children, the apps provide a fun interactive experience that will teach them proper hygiene skills. Adults can use brushing apps to remind them when it’s time to change their toothbrush head. You can even show your dentist how often you brush and for how long.

  • Storage and Sanitizers

Many electric toothbrushes come with a compartment that doubles as storage, and a sanitizer.  The most common kind is a UV sanitizer that will remove bacteria from your toothbrush head. Once clean it will stay tucked away to prevent debris from getting on it.

electric-toothbrush

The Disadvantages of An Electric Toothbrush

While an electric toothbrush has a list full of benefits, there are some not so great things as well.  Some disadvantages of an electric toothbrush are:

  • Increased Cost

Depending on what you’re looking for in an electric toothbrush, you can be looking at spending as much as $300.

  • Traveling

While most electric toothbrushes will work for several days without being charged, for longer trips you’ll need to bring along your charger (and charging station if you have one). If you’re leaving the country, the type of electricity available may not be compatible with your charger which can be a real bummer.

  • Not Easily Accessible

If you are traveling and forget to pack your manual toothbrush what do you do?  You run to just about any store and buy a new one.  Electric toothbrushes aren’t as accessible, and since they can cost quite a bit, you may not want to buy another one.

  • Hard To Get Used To

At first, the vibration from your toothbrush can feel funny on your teeth.  Most people get used to this, but some can’t get passed it and choose not to use an electric toothbrush for this reason.

  • Struggle to Find Replacement Heads

The brush head that snaps or screws on to the base is what you’ll replace every few months. Some manufacturers make brushes and heads that are specific for each other and not available for purchase from anyone other than them. This may mean that your replacement parts will cost more than ones that are vastly available.

Commit to Excellent Dental Care 

Making a commitment to having good oral health doesn’t stop at choosing the right toothbrush.  Getting a professional cleaning in Mesa at least once every six months will remove the plaque and tartar buildup that was left behind. Dental exams are also important for diagnosing oral problems early before they get too bad.

Dr. Vinh Huynh, DMD and the friendly staff of Eastport Dental in Mesa, AZ look forward to seeing you and helping take care of your smile for many years to come. If you’re searching for a new dentist, then come see us today!

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