Walking down the toothbrush aisle of your local store is enough to make you confused with all of the options available today. Some toothbrushes promise fresh breath, deep cleaning and even teeth whitening, while others are specially designed for children and seniors. These special features are meant to entice you so that ultimately you will buy their product over the competitor’s option.
When in doubt, it’s always best to ask your dentist what toothbrush is the right one for you! With so many shapes, sizes and styles of toothbrushes on the market, deciding which kind to buy can be confusing. Here’s what you should look for:
- Most dental professionals agree that softer bristled toothbrushes are best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed toothbrushes are also preferred since they can better reach all areas of the mouth and are less likely to irritate the gums.
- When it comes to the type of handle (non-slip grip or flexible neck), shape of the head (tapered or rectangular), and style of the bristles (rippled, flat or dome shape), pick whatever is most comfortable for you. The best toothbrush is one that fits into your mouth easily and allows you to reach all teeth.
- Stick to an ADA-recommended toothbrush with medium-soft, nylon bristles. The ADA’s approval goes a long way!
- For many, a powered toothbrush is a good alternative. It can do a better job of cleaning teeth, particularly for those who have difficulty brushing or who have limited dexterity with their hands.
It’s important to remember that after daily use of your toothbrush, it can lose its effectiveness and even become a breeding ground for germs, fungus and bacteria. To get the most out of your toothbrush, replace it frequently — at least every 1-3 months. And if you recently had a cold or infection, you may have transferred germs to your toothbrush so be sure to use a new toothbrush to avoid reinfection.
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