What kind of toothbrush should you use?

WOW! There are hundreds of toothbrush shapes, sizes, brands, and colours. What is the difference between soft, medium, and hard? Should you get the straight one, the bendy one, the battery operated one, the plug in kind? ARG!  Well, keep calm and make sure to ask your dentist next time you’re there.  Everyone has a different shaped mouth, different teeth patterns, and even their sensitivity is different.  The condition of your tooth enamel or if it’s hard to get the brush between your teeth and cheeks at the back of your mouth can also impact your toothbrush choice. There are brushes that clean your tongue better too.

First and foremost, talk to your dentist.  Tell him your thoughts, what are your difficult areas (if any) to clean.  Some people mistakenly choose hard brushes thinking that they will clean better and work on your gums better.  This may do more harm than good by eroding the enamel rather than saving the enamel.  Again, figure out what you or your children are having problems with, bring that up with your dentist and get advice on finding the right brush for you.  Most people (and dentists) are recommending power toothbrushes, but with some people they don’t reach the proper areas. Your mouth may need a different shaped brush.  And yet, some dentists say, no matter what type of toothbrush good brushing technique is the best.

Don’t disinfect or keep your toothbrush in a case. Store your toothbrushes separately so that they don’t touch each other. Just rinse and air dry.  Also, the ADA (American Dental Association) recommends replacing your toothbrush every 3-4 months.  You should replace your toothbrush when the bristles are getting weak and old. Look closely at your dry toothbrush. If you see flat spots, split ends, kinks in the bristles or missing bristles it’s time to replace your brush. Replace your toothbrush after you’ve had a cold or other contagious illness.  If your toothbrush looks stained or dirty replace it.

What kinds of toothbrushes have you tried?  Are you using the right one? Do you get discouraged standing there staring at all of them?  And are you still using the same brush from 10 years ago?  Share your thoughts and experiences and hopefully you can help someone else with their issues.