We’ve all seen the commercials that claim electric toothbrushes are the best way to clean and take care of your teeth, but are these claims actually true? Although electric toothbrushes aren't the perfect solution for everybody, in many cases they can help better prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Although this article will help you to learn more about electric toothbrushes, it’s best to talk to your dentist to find out whether or not this is the right choice for you.
Electronic toothbrushes clean teeth more effectively than traditional ones. Since you don't need to brush as hard with an electric toothbrush to get the same results, you are also less likely to injure your gums or inner cheeks.
Another benefit of the electric toothbrush, especially if you have arthritis or a cognitive impairment, is that it’s easier to handle. Regular toothbrushes require a certain amount of dexterity to grip and move it around. Since an electric toothbrush moves itself around, there’s less physical work required from your wrist and elbow joints.
Most electric toothbrushes have two heads that rotate in opposite directions. This makes the toothbrush far more effective than a traditional toothbrush, since it brushes the teeth in both directions at once. While it's possible to simulate this effect by manually brushing your teeth in one direction and then in the other, many people don't bother to do so. In addition, since most people have one dominant hand, they tend to brush better in one direction than in the other. Since the electric toothbrush moves across teeth the same way, regardless of what direction it's going in, it makes for a more effective cleaning instrument. Thus, teeth generally get cleaner.
The smaller head size of the electric toothbrush also gives it an advantage over the traditional toothbrush. The smaller head makes it easier for the electric toothbrush to reach those hard-to-brush teeth in the back corners of your mouth where food tends to hide.
It's even more important to clean your teeth thoroughly if you're wearing braces. Food particles often get stuck behind the wires or brackets, which can lead to tooth decay or gum disease if not cleaned out properly. For this reason, if you have braces, you’re encouraged to floss between meals, as well as brush your teeth twice a day.
Using an electric toothbrush can be helpful, since they tend to clean the teeth more effectively than traditional toothbrushes. The smaller toothbrush head may also be able to clean around wires and brackets more effectively.
Receding gums often occur because bacteria builds up on the gum line. Since electric toothbrushes do a better job of cleaning the teeth and gums, using an electric toothbrush can help prevent your gums from receding.
In addition, receding gums can be made worse by using a toothbrush that has hard bristles, or by brushing too hard. Using an electric toothbrush ensures that you won't have this problem, since these toothbrushes have smaller heads and softer bristles.
Most electric toothbrushes are safe to use; however, there have occasionally been serious problems with electric toothbrushes, especially when used on children.
Always supervise children while they are using an electric toothbrush. If the child puts the toothbrush on too high a speed, he can cut his lips. Check your children's toothbrushes regularly to make sure that bristles are not coming loose, as loose bristles can be swallowed or can lodge in a child's tonsils.
Electric toothbrushes are not damaging to tooth enamel. In fact, since they clean the surface of enamel more effectively than traditional toothbrushes, the enamel will look whiter and shinier after being brushed by an electric toothbrush.
Enamel becomes discolored when plaque builds up on your teeth, and this can lead to tooth decay. Using an electric toothbrush can therefore prevent tooth decay and keep your enamel healthier and brighter.
Electric toothbrushes have come a long way since the 1960s, when the first such toothbrushes were ineffective and awkward to use. Modern electric toothbrushes are fairly easy to use and do a good job of cleaning most people's teeth. If you dislike brushing your teeth or have a hard time doing so, you may want to consider an electric toothbrush. Talk to your dentist to find out which toothbrush would most effectively meet your needs.Resources:
* This information is for general educational purposes only. The information presented is not a guarantee or representation that the procedures are covered under a Humana Dental or Vision Plan.
Last updated June 2014
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