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Choosing the best electric toothbrush and flosser

Mon, 7th Dec 2020

Clare Crocker, our Dental Hygienist, shares her advice on how to find the best electric toothbrush or water flosser.

Here at The Gentle Touch we try to give the best advice to our patients in regard to their oral health. We get asked all the time about the basics of dental hygiene – questions such as “what’s the best toothbrush for me?” and “what about floss?”. We tailor our advice to each individual person, of course, but I think it’s worth sharing some of our general thoughts on how to choose the right products for your twice-daily toothbrushing routine.

Two products we spend a lot of time discussing with our patients are the best electric toothbrush and water flosser. Read on for our top tips if you’re looking to upgrade!

The Best Electric Toothbrush

There are many different types of powered or electric toothbrush available and they come in all different price ranges too. This can cause confusion when trying to decide which one is best for you.

I have tried many different types over my many years of experience and have found ones with the following attributes to be the most effective:

  1. Small round head: this allows you to reach the back of your mouth much more effectively than a manual toothbrush.
  2. A brush that oscillates (the head rotates in one direction and then the other) has shown to be more effective at removing plaque and reducing gum inflammation than a manual toothbrush.
  3. Some have a pressure sensor on them which glows red if you brush too hard – that means you’re much less likely to harm your teeth or gums. This can be especially useful if you are caring for someone and you are worried about hurting them.
  4. A toothbrush with a timer on it, although not essential, is very useful as it guides you to brush your teeth for the recommended time of two minutes.
  5. One handle/base can be used for all the family: just change the head! – which are now available in environmentally friendly materials.

The electric toothbrushes can help those with limited manual dexterity, such as those with arthritis, and can also be a motivator for children: after all, who doesn’t love a gadget!

The Best Water Flosser

A water flosser is a handheld device that directs a stream of pressurised water between your teeth and gums. This helps to remove plaque and food debris from between your teeth. Some considerations:

  1. As the water is pressurised it can be a little messy to use.
  2. Some models need to be attached to a power supply while being used. This would need to be a consideration if you decide to buy one. There are cordless models available, however, they tend not to be as powerful as the plugged in ones.
  3. The water flosser is safe to use around crowns, bridges and implants. It also very effective around orthodontic fixed braces. These can be very difficult to use conventional dental floss or tape round and keep clean.
  4. People with limited dexterity have found that a dental flosser can be very helpful.
  5. It can be very effective if you have an extremely dry mouth and have found using interdental brushes or dental tape difficult.
  6. A dental flosser does not replace brushing your teeth or using other interdental aids, but it absolutely does compliment them.

I hope these introductions into the above products help. We are always happy to discuss with you about any products that are available and give advice on which would be the best one for you.


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