Electric toothbrushes: Are they better?
Electric toothbrushes vs manual
Electric toothbrushes are more effective at removing dental plaque than a manual toothbrush
Cochrane Oral Health Care Group is an independent consumer research organization whose mission it is to review and summarize the best evidence from research in order to help consumers make informed choice about health care treatment and/or products that claim “health benefits”.
Manual vs Electric toothbrush
Cochrane published a report in 2014 that summarized results from 56 studies conducted between 1964 to 2011 in which a total of 5068 participants were randomized with either a electric toothbrush or a manual toothbrush.
The purpose of the study was to determine if electric toothbrushes are more effective at removing dental plaque from the surfaces of teeth and gums than a traditional, manual toothbrush.
Click here to read the entire electric toothbrush study.
Electric toothbrush study results
The electric toothbrush study showed that dental plaque was reduced by 21% after switching to an electric toothbrush for three months. Additionally, participants had an 11% decrease in gum tissue inflammation, aka gingivitis. Both of these findings are significant and further validate what we have seen in our existing dental patients who’ve
made the switch.
Which electric toothbrush should I purchase?
Oral B and Sonicare are the two most popular brands of electric toothbrushes sold at retail. Statistically speaking, both brands are effective at removing dental plaque from the surfaces of your teeth and gums. Which one is right for you largely depends upon the features, accessories, and your budget.
Popular electric toothbrush features
- Mode of action is either sweeping or circular
- Built in 2 minute timer
- Multiple power levels
- Inclusion of specialty and/or replacement electric toothbrush heads
- Guarantee or limited warranty of satisfaction
- Rechargeable battery
Photo source: moo.review
Oral B electric toothbrush
- Toothbrush head motion is an oscillating, circular motion
- Several models available
- Price varies upon model
- Offers the most variety of toothbrush head option over leading competitors
- Replacement heads and charging base are interchangeable among most newer models
- Has built in pressure sensor to alert you if you brushing too hard
Oral B’s premium line includes Bluetooth Smart models that sync with Oral B’s free app for additional features.
Oral B offers an assortment of electric toothbrush heads
Dentistry for the Entire Family’s dental hygienists compiled their top recommendations for Oral B toothbrush heads.
- Floss action for daily tooth brushing
- Sensitive for people who have sensitive teeth and/or receding gums
- Ortho for people with dental braces
- Power tip for people who struggle with flossing and/or cleaning under dental bridges
Sonicare Flex electric toothbrush
- Toothbrush head motion is sweeping & vibrating
- Teeth cleaning modes: clean, sensitive, and massage
- Toothbrush head is available in two sizes
- Variety of models available, price varies between models
- Several models include an integrated ultraviolet (UV) sanitizer that removes up to 99% of bacteria* on your toothbrush
Recommendations from our dental hygienists
Which electric toothbrush do you recommend?
Most all of them answered with “it depends”.
Yikes! I know it’s not the answer you were expecting. Several hygienists said it largely depends upon the patient’s individual needs. Read their recommendations below.
Healthy Adults & Teenagers without dental braces
It was a tie, really is a matter of personal preference.
Adults with gum disease
Majority of dental hygienists felt that the Sonicare vibrating, sweeping motion is an added benefit over Oral B’s oscillating motion.
Adults with dental bridges
Oral B won because of Oral B’s Power Tip head. If the Sonicare had a similar attachment, Sonicare would have been declared the winner.
Adults & teens who have a difficult time flossing
Oral B won only because of their Power tip head, if the Sonicare had a similar attachment, the Sonicare would have been the winner. Additionally, several hygienists added that they felt the Sonicare sweeping motion is more effective at stimulating the gum tissue.
Our dental hygienists all picked Oral B
- Increased likelihood that kids may accidentally drop their toothbrush
- Smaller head size
- Bigger handle size
- Prevents the need for parent to reinvest in a different electric toothbrush if their kids have dental braces placed. Oral B offers a specialty ortho attachment for people with dental braces.
From time to time, electric toothbrush manufacturers will offer
us a professional discount to purchase price that is well below
or not available in retail. When they do, we purchase as many as allowed and make them available for sale in our office.
Currently, we have Oral B’s Vitality offering for sale (pictured left). This configuration comes packaged inside a cool backpack for kids.
Call (763) 586-9988 or email us to reserve yours today.
Article updated April 2019