Many patients are hesitant to buy an electric toothbrush because they seem to cost much more than a humble manual toothbrush. But for an effective clean, you don’t need all the fancy bells and whistles of many “smart” electric toothbrushes, which cost anywhere from $100 to $200+. In fact, for most people, the Oral-B Pro 1000 is a terrific electric toothbrush, and it costs only $40 (and even less at some big-box stores if a rebate is offered). And over its lifetime, it won’t cost you too much more since you can usually get an Oral-B replacement brush head for about $3. There are also several other great toothbrushes available! Ask our team for recommendations. In this article, we outline some of the benefits of electric toothbrushes to help you decide if it’s worth the extra expense.
Are Better at Fighting Plaque & Gingivitis
The American Dental Association asserts that a manual toothbrush is as effective as an electric one, as long as you brush for two minutes twice a day with a toothbrush that has soft bristles. However, in 2014 the international research organization Cochrane performed a systematic review of 56 studies from 1964 to 2011 in which over 5,000 participants were randomized to brush their teeth with an electric toothbrush or a manual toothbrush. Their conclusion? “Powered toothbrushes reduce plaque and gingivitis more than manual toothbrushing in the short and long term”, for after analyzing the studies, the authors found that patients who had used electric toothbrushes experienced: a reduction of 11% in plaque & 6% in gingivitis at 1-3 months of use, and a reduction of 21% in plaque & 11% in gingivitis after 3 months of use.
Help Those with Dexterity Problems
Many people — especially children, seniors, and those with disabilities — have problems with manual dexterity, which can make proper use of a manual toothbrush very difficult. In such cases, having a powered toothbrush that does most of the brushing for them is a big help. And patients who struggle to apply a safe amount of pressure will benefit from an electric brush with a built-in pressure sensor.
Are Easier for Those with Braces
With dental braces, plaque has even more nooks and crannies to accumulate, making it frustrating to clean those hard-to-reach areas. A powered brush with an Ortho head is designed to fit easily around braces, helping to remove more plaque and thus prevent decay, discoloration, and gum disease.
For many people, electric toothbrushes provide incentive to brush by making brushing more interesting, or at least less boring. Plus, when using an electric toothbrush, people tend to spend the adequate time brushing because electrics have built-in timers, so you remember to brush the entire two minutes.
More Questions? Ask Us!
Feel free to ask us more about electric toothbrushes at your next appointment. And if you are due for a checkup, or have any other oral health concerns, contact us today to set up a visit with Dr. Sullivan.