There is a lot of debate about whether electric toothbrushes or manual toothbrushes are better for your oral health. Each has its own unique benefits as well as cons in terms of efficiency and convenience.
Many people think that just because a toothbrush is electric, it automatically is the better choice, but that is not necessarily the case. Manual and electric toothbrushes are both effective in preventing tooth decay and gum disease according to the American Dental Association (ADA). There are certain qualities of an electric toothbrush that may be more appealing.
Benefits of Using an Electric Toothbrush
Manual toothbrushes and electric toothbrushes can both protect your teeth when used properly. But electric toothbrushes are better at removing harmful plaque from your teeth and gums. Electric toothbrushes have heads that vibrate and rotate, which is more efficient at getting rid of plaque. A manual toothbrush moves in only one direction. But electric ones create “micro-movements” to clean plaque from teeth.
Several studies have shown that electric toothbrushes are more effective at decreasing plaque and gingivitis. After three months, there is a 21 percent reduction in plaque and an 11 percent reduction in gingivitis.
Most electric toothbrushes have heads that can be removed and replaced. Dentists recommend that you replace your toothbrush (or toothbrush head) every three months. Or replace it when the bristles begin to fray—whichever comes first.
This keeps your toothbrush working as well as possible, and it keeps unwanted bacteria from growing in your toothbrush. An electric toothbrush makes this process easier because you don’t have to buy a brand-new brush every three months, and you can have several replacement heads at once.
Electric toothbrushes can help you stay focused more while brushing your teeth as compared to manual ones. Some electric brushes have timers built into them. This makes it easier to keep brushing for the full recommended two minutes.
Using an electric toothbrush can be more fun for both adults and children, which is helpful in keeping a routine. Also, electric toothbrushes are ideal for anyone with limited mobility.
Drawbacks to Using Electric Toothbrushes
If you have browsed the dental hygiene section in a store, you have seen the large difference in price between a manual toothbrush and an electric toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes can cost anywhere from $20 to over $200, which is not necessarily budget-friendly.
There is also the additional cost of the replacement heads. It may be more cost-efficient for you to buy a pack of manual toothbrushes rather than buy an expensive electric toothbrush.
Besides, manual toothbrushes can still clean just as effectively as electric toothbrushes when used properly. You might not think the cost of an electric toothbrush worth it if you practice a diligent oral hygiene routine already.
If you travel often, an electric toothbrush may not be ideal. It is heavier than a manual toothbrush, and many of them are required to be plugged in. Traveling abroad may be difficult with an electric toothbrush since many countries use different power outlets.
Overall, it mainly depends on your preference and desire for your oral health care routine. You may also consider talking to your dentist to hear their recommendation for your specific routine.