One of the most frequent questions asked by dental patients is how to choose the best toothbrush. A study by the Oral Health Foundation affirms that using an electric toothbrush helps people of all ages have healthier gums and less tooth decay. An electric model also helps you keep your natural teeth for longer in your lifetime. But if an electric type is too pricey for you or impractical in some situations, a manual toothbrush can still get the job done well. You just need to know what to look for, when making your shopping decision.
What Matters Most When Choosing Your Manual Toothbrush
Below are three key factors to consider when weighing your best toothbrush options.
It is very important to choose a model with soft bristles, not medium or hard. This is true whether you want an electric toothbrush or a manual one.
Both medium and hard bristles are abrasive on your teeth and gums. These bristles can contribute to gum recession. They also leave microabrasions in tooth enamel, making your teeth more likely to suffer cavities and sensitivity. If you use a medium or hard-bristled toothbrush, you may notice your gums bleed more often while brushing, too.
In many ways when shopping for a new manual toothbrush, quality counts. Cost cuts in the manufacturing process made by unrecognized brands or those with really low price tags typically reflect poor quality bristles. After all, when buying a toothbrush you are essentially paying for the bristles.
Cheaper materials or operational shortcuts often result in uneven bristle edges or even sharp bristles. Low quality bristles can damage your teeth and gums, as mentioned in the section above.
You need to replace your manual toothbrush often. The typical timeframe for replacement is every three months. Some people choose to replace their toothbrushes more frequently, driven by when the bristles soften too much, bend, crush or become frayed. As bristles break down, they do not effectively clean your teeth. You should also replace your toothbrush after you are sick.
Because you need to replace your manual toothbrush or electric toothbrush heads every three months, you should consider this when making your ultimate buying decision. This means that a costly brush may not make sense, if it does not offer benefits beyond a more economical option.
Should I Look for the ADA Seal on My Manual Toothbrush?
The American Dental Association (ADA) is the utmost authority on dentistry and oral health in the United States. Buying a manual toothbrush endorsed by the ADA and showing their Seal of Acceptance is a good way to know you are making a wise choice.
It is also important to know that endorsement by the ADA is a costly process in which not all manufacturers choose to participate. In fact, many of the top brands do not consider this endorsement important because these brands are already trusted by consumers. But if you see the ADA seal on manual toothbrush packaging for a brand you are unfamiliar with, you can know it is a good option for your teeth. This seal means the brush is “free of sharp edges and endpoints” that can damage your teeth and gums.
Three Manual Toothbrush Recommendations
Your dentist is always your best resource for manual toothbrush recommendations. Every dentist has their own preferred options for patients. They always consider bristle softness, brush quality and frequent replacement when helping you make your choice. They can also lead you the right direction for quicker decision-making, given the extremely broad field of options we all face today.
Three great manual toothbrush options you may not have considered before include:
The Radius Source manual toothbrush is a great option when you want the convenience of subscription-based brush replacement and delivery right to your door. The Source brush features a reusable handle and replacement heads with soft and super soft flossing bristle options.
If you have a history of brushing too hard and damaging your gums, this brush’s wide massaging head spreads your pressure force over the wider surface area. This means less force exerted on your teeth and gums. The bristles are made of soft vegetable nylon, also minimizing risk of gum bleeding, sensitivity and receding.
Because you reuse the handle and replace only the heads, you also pass on 93 percent less consumer waste.
Oral-B Cross Action Manual Toothbrush
If you prefer to buy your manual toothbrush in your local drugstore or grocery market, Oral-B is a widely accessible brand. A longtime dentist’s favorite is the Oral-B Cross Action handed out to new patients in many dental practices. This no-frills toothbrush costs less than three dollars throughout North Carolina, making it a great budget-friendly choice. You can also find them available in multi-packs for greater cost savings.
Nimbus Extra Soft Manual Toothbrush
In an answer to his patients’ questions about finding the best manual toothbrush, a periodontist designed his own product line. The Nimbus Extra Soft manual toothbrush is designed to clean between teeth. Thanks to its micro-fine, super soft bristles, this brush line works especially well for individuals with gum recession or gingivitis.
Talk to Your Dentist about the Best Manual Toothbrush for Your Smile
If you are unsure about which manual toothbrush suits your needs best, you only need to ask your Carolina Dental Arts dentist or dental hygienist at your next visit. Schedule your appointment today in our Durham, Raleigh or Goldsboro locations of Carolina Dental Arts.