Walking through the dental care aisle at your local shopping center can bring up many questions…
What’s the difference between hard or soft toothbrush bristles? Should I spend a few more dollars and get myself an electric toothbrush? Does whitening toothpaste really whiten my teeth?
Luckily for you I’m here to answer those questions, and give you a little more information for your benefit!
The difference between ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ toothbrushes
The difference is simple: The harder toothbrush bristles are more stiff than the soft ones. However, it’s how you use them that makes the difference. Here at our office, we recommend softer bristles. When brushing your teeth you should be making sure to brush and massage your gums and gum line just as much as your teeth. Brushing the gums is extremely important in fighting periodontal disease and keeping your smile healthy, and should be apart of your daily brushing routine.
Manual Toothbrush… or Electric Toothbrush?
A manual toothbrush, when used correctly, will do a great job at keeping your teeth and gums healthy, however, for those types of people who aren’t great at keeping up with the care routine, we recommend the Sonicare toothbrush line, for a few great reasons. First, the Sonicare Toothbrush will force you to brush your teeth for the daily recommended time, because it has a timer built right into it and turns off once you’ve been brushing for long enough. Second, it is great for people who, due to arthritis or other dexerity issues, can’t hold and brush with a manual toothbrush as well as they should. The electric toothbrush does all the ‘brushing’ for you, you just have to hold it up to your teeth and gum line.
Whatever type of toothbrush you choose to use is your preference, however, whatever type you choose understand that your bristles should be changed every three months. After about 90 days the bristles are no longer straight and firm, thus leading to less efficiency in cleaning the plaque off your teeth.
Wait… and now I have to buy a tongue brush?!
The top surface of the tongue can hold a lot of bacteria, food debris, fungi and dead cells that cause bad breath and other oral care problems. Toothbrushes are better than nothing for cleaning the tongue, however, they aren’t the best. Toothbrushes are made for cleaning porous tooth surfaces, not the sponge like tissue of the tongue, so now there are specially made tongue brushes to help with your oral care.
Tongue brushes are shaped more like that anatomy of the tongue, and are created in a way that lifts and traps the plaque that coats the inside of your mouth and effectively cleans the surface of the tongue.