You use your toothbrush every day, at least twice a day. But have you ever really taken some time to think about your toothbrush? How did you choose it? Was it some special feature that caught your eye, or did you choose it based on color scheme?
Here at Advanced Dental of Las Cruces, our goal is to help you with your oral health decision making by giving you the information you need to make wise choices. Without experts, like the ones at our office in Las Cruces, a decision as simple as choosing a toothbrush can be overwhelming. Just look at the oral health aisle in your local pharmacy and you will see the myriad of teeth cleaning options that are available.
But how are all these toothbrushes different?
Some have tongue scrapers. Some have gum massagers. There are toothbrushes that vibrate. There are ones that pulsate. Does any of this really matter?
Only if you want it to. In fact, the features that make an effective toothbrush are fairly few and simple. All that really matters is size and bristle firmness. Everything else is just extra. If you like the tongue scraper, and are will to pay for it, then go with the toothbrush you like. But the bristles on your toothbrush are just fine for cleaning your tongue, and for massaging your gums.
Even though finding an effective toothbrush is not complicated, it is important that you choose the right one, or else you may not be getting your teeth as clean as you could be, and your oral health could suffer as a result.
Finding the Right Size
The size of your toothbrush is an important matter because it determines how easily you can maneuver toothbrush to get to hard to reach areas of your mouth. Your back teeth, or molars, are difficult to reach, and if the head of your toothbrush is too large, or if the handle is too short, then it can be nearly impossible.
But if the the head is too small, you will have to work harder to cover the surface area of your teeth, which will make it easier to miss spots, especially when you are tired at the end of a long day. If the handle of the brush is too long, you run the risk of injuring the soft tissue inside your mouth. The inside of your cheeks and the back of your throat are particularly vulnerable to this.
A toothbrush with a head that is a half an inch wide by an inch long is the ideal size for the average adult. As for the handle, it just needs to be long enough that you can get a good grip on it and easily manipulate it inside your mouth to adequately clean your teeth and gums.
If you are smaller or larger than most adults, you may need a smaller or larger toothbrush, which are available. If you have any concerns about your toothbrush choice, visit us at Advanced Dental of Las Cruces, and we will help you decide.
How Hard of a Bristle Do You Need?
This one is even less complicated than determining size because most people need to use a toothbrush with soft bristles. The medium and hard bristles may be appropriate if you are dealing with plaque and tartar build up, but they could also very easily damage your teeth and gums.
If you think tartar build up is an issue for you, come to our office in Las Cruces and we will determine whether or not you need a stiffer bristle on your toothbrush.
Electric vs. Manual
An electric toothbrush is going to cost you a little, or sometime a lot, more money than a manual toothbrush. However, there is no evidence that they are any more effective than a manual brush, or any better for your oral health.
The only instance an electric toothbrush would definitely be a superior choice is if your hand mobility is compromised for some reason. Injury and arthritis sometimes make it hard for people to hold a toothbrush or brush vigorously enough to get their teeth clean. In this case, the benefits of an electric toothbrush are obvious. Otherwise, it’s a simple matter of choice.
Again, if you have any questions or concerns about your toothbrush, come see us at Advanced Dental of Las Cruces. Not only will we help you choose a toothbrush, we will do everything we can to keep your smile healthy and bright.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment.