How to Choose the Right Toothbrush


Did you know it is recommended that you change your toothbrush every three months? Perhaps it is time for you to start looking into your next toothbrush! There are plenty of things to consider when you buy, but how do you choose which type is best for you? Here are a few things you should know about each type of toothbrush as you make your decision.

Manual Toothbrush

A manual toothbrush is the most common kind you’ll see for quite a few reasons—it is by far the most affordable option and it gets the job done. That said, it requires your own power and technique to ensure you’re cleaning your teeth properly. Brushing up and down and in circles on each tooth may require a bit more time, but the manual toothbrush has stood the test of time as a reliable method for cleaning your teeth and ensuring gum health.

So which manual toothbrush is the right one for you? There are a few factors to consider:

  • Bristle Design – Studies have shown that angled or multi-leveled bristles are much more successful in removing plaque than flat-trimmed bristles.
  • Bristle Strength – The American Dental Association recommends using soft bristled toothbrushes to minimize the chances of hurting your gums. (However, it should be noted that medium bristles are more effective at removing biofilm from your teeth).
  • Safety and Efficacy – You may also want to review the ADA’s list of manual toothbrushes that have received the Seal of Acceptance. This indicates that the toothbrush you’re considering will not only be effective in removing plaque and preventing gingivitis, but that it is also safe to use. The American Dental Association reviews the toothbrush’s materials for safe use in the mouth and durability. So be certain to check out ADA.org before you buy your next brush!

Electric Toothbrush

Your next toothbrush option would be the electric toothbrush, which is essentially a level up from the manual brush. An electric brush has rotating bristles that can increase your number of brushstrokes to around 2,500 to 7,000 brushstrokes per minute. So while the electric toothbrush may be more expensive, it’s capability of doing a lot of the brushing work for you is a major perk (especially for those with mobility disabilities). Typically, an electric toothbrush’s bristles will either rotate or scrub forward and backward in a mechanized motion. They are rechargeable—so you won’t need to worry about the batteries dying— and they often come with a warrantee.

Here are a few things you should look for when buying an electric toothbrush:

  • Easy Operation – Your toothbrush should be easy to use! Make sure the controls aren’t too complicated and that the brush size and shape will make it easy to maneuver.
  • Helpful Features – Many electric toothbrushes include a two-minute timer that ensures you’re brushing the recommended amount. Travel cases and charging stands may also be useful features to you!
  • Durability – Brush heads will typically need to be replaced every three months. Make sure your toothbrush has good performance ratings—you don’t want to buy a toothbrush that has hitches or surges.

Sonic Toothbrush

The next level beyond an electric toothbrush would be a sonic toothbrush! A sonic toothbrush can clean your teeth with 30,000 brush strokes a minute, and are great for those who have difficulty with mobility. These toothbrushes use high velocity speeds and high frequency sound waves to efficiently remove plaque and even power the fluids in your mouth into tough to reach spots like the gum line and between your teeth. For this reason, you simply only need to guide your sonic toothbrush to the various ridges of your mouth, rather than making any brushing movements as you might with the manual or electric toothbrush.

Some things you’ll want to consider when buying a toothbrush are as follows:

  • Price – As you’re shopping for toothbrushes, you’ll want to ensure you’re getting the best bang for your buck. Sonic toothbrushes can get expensive, so keep an eye on the price tag!
  • Helpful Features – Just like the electric toothbrush, there are many individual features that can enhance your brushing experience, from timers to extended charge time. In fact, some even have Bluetooth!

Want to learn more about how to take the best care of your teeth? Call Valley Dental Care to schedule a check-up today!