With so many choices, how do you pick the right toothbrush?
You already know the importance of brushing and flossing daily. You may wonder if you’re using the right toothbrush though.
When you go to the store, it seems like there is an endless supply of choices. How do you know what is the best toothbrush for you?
Even with all the choices available to you, the truth is that any toothbrush that seems comfortable to you and that you use regularly is good for you. Brushing correctly at least twice a day is what matters most.
That said, the American Dental Association has recommendations for you in choosing a toothbrush:
- Your toothbrush should have soft bristles. Hard bristles may cause gum tissue to pull back from teeth, which exposes the tooth root and leads to increased sensitivity temperature and certain foods.
- Small-headed toothbrushes are usually better because they can reach all areas of the mouth. Select a toothbrush head size that can easily fit into the mouth and can brush one to two teeth at a time (the general size is 1″ long and ½” wide).
- Powered toothbrushes don’t clean teeth any better than a standard toothbrush does. The habit of brushing is most important so if an electric toothbrush gets you to brush frequently, that it’s money well spent.
- An electric toothbrush can be a good choice for anyone who needs assistance brushing teeth, including people with arthritis, conditions that limit mobility, people with braces or people with misaligned or uneven teeth surfaces that make a thorough cleaning more challenging.
- Replace your toothbrush (or toothbrush head for a powered toothbrush) as soon as the bristles begin to look worn or frayed. The standard recommendation is every three months,
- If you’re still undecided about which toothbrush to use, contact your dentist.
Other Toothbrush Tips:
- Rinse your toothbrush with tap water after brushing to remove any remaining toothpaste and debris.
- Store the brush in an upright position if possible and allow it to air dry until using it again.
- Do not routinely cover toothbrushes or store them in closed containers. A moist environment, such as a closed container, is more conducive to the growth of microorganisms than open air is.
How to Brush Your Teeth Properly
Common Toothbrushing Mistakes:
- Keeping your toothbrush for too long – The ADA recommends changing your toothbrush every 3-4 months.
- Not brushing for long enough – Your teeth should be brushed for a full two minutes, twice per day.
- Brushing too hard – Too much pressure may damage your gums.
- Brushing teeth right after eating – Wait at least 60 minutes before brushing, especially if you have had something acidic like lemons, grapefruit or soda.
- Improper storage -Keep your toothbrush upright and let it air dry. Avoid keeping your toothbrush in a container where germs have a better opportunity to grow.
- Using a brush with hard bristles – A soft bristled brush is gentler on your teeth and gums.
Ready for your dental appointment in the Plano, Texas area?
Contact us today to set up your examination. Dr. Wilhite has over 30 years experience helping patients to keep their smiles healthy. He will be able to identify possible issues and recommend further treatments if needed.
We can also talk about affordable financing and dental insurance options to make sure you get the care you need.
Call us at (972) 964-3774
David Wilhite is a Dentist in Plano, Texas who has helped thousands of patients with a wide variety of dental health issues from general to cosmetic dentistry, Invisalign clear braces, TMJ treatment, dental implants and full mouth restorations.