Category Archives: Oral Hygiene Products

Floss-Pick vs. Dental Floss: Pros of Traditional Dental Floss

1. Traditional string dental floss gives you much more control over the positioning and movement of the floss. The point of flossing your teeth is not simply snapping the string up and down between your teeth but to actually remove the food and plaque particles accumulating in between your teeth before it has a chance to harden and get stuck onto your teeth. As you improve your flossing technique, which becomes more and more important with age, you will start to realize that how you use the floss makes a difference on the outcome. Getting the dental floss below the gumlines and moving it back and forth by hugging the front and back tooth surface is much more effective than simply snapping the dental floss up and down. Using a traditional dental floss gives you much more control by using your two hands and allows you to better maneuver it. Conversely, floss-picks have a hard time going beneath your gums and an even harder time properly moving back and forth to remove all the accumulated food and plaque. As a result you get a much better cleaning when using regular dental floss over a floss-pick.

2. Less chance of transferring harmful bacteria between your teeth. One major advantage of using traditional dental floss is the ability to allocate a clean segment of the floss string to go in between each gap. When using a floss-pick you are stuck using the same half-an-inch dental floss string to clean in between all of your teeth surfaces. This can harbor and transfer bacteria from one site to the next which may have adverse effects on your teeth and gums. With a traditional dental floss you can roll the floss string around your finger after every few uses to dedicate a new segment to each region of your mouth thus reducing the possibility of cross-contamination.

3. More economical option. Using traditional dental floss will cost you much less than using a floss-pick. Considering that you have to use a new floss-pick each and every time you want to floss in between your teeth whereas a single dental floss dispenser should last you for several months.

NEXT >> Floss-Pick vs. Dental Floss: How to Decide

Floss-Pick vs. Dental Floss: Pros of a Floss-Pick

Which Type of Toothbrush is Better?

8 Questions to help you decide which type of toothbrush to go with:

Now that you understand the benefits of each type of toothbrush, it’s time to decide which is a better option for you. Here is a list of questions to better help you with your decision. Please answer each question with either a “yes” or “no“:

  1. Do you find motioning and positioning your toothbrush to be a tedious and difficult task?
  2. Do you feel that you’re not cleaning your teeth as well as you should be?
  3. Are you usually brushing your teeth much less than the recommended two minutes?
  4. Can you afford a relatively expensive electric toothbrush?
  5. Do you press too hard on your toothbrush?
  6. Are most or all of your back teeth sensitive to hot and cold?
  7. Have you been positively diagnosed with toothbrush abrasion?
  8. Has your dentist recommended that you change to an electric toothbrush?

Good candidate for using an electric toothbrush

If you answered “yes” to most of the above questions then you should consider switching to an electric toothbrush.

Questions 1 and 2: Convenience

Brushing properly makes all the difference in how healthy your teeth are going to be as you age. You will continue to develop cavities and gum issues as you age if you’re not brushing your teeth correctly. If you’re dedicated to brushing correctly and willing to improve your brushing techniques, then a manual brush will do just fine. However, if you’re not brushing effectively using a manual toothbrush, then consider switching to an electric brush instead.

Question 3: Brushing too quickly

Most of us brush our teeth far less than the recommended two minutes. If you’re one of these people, then you must pay attention that you’re dedicating enough time to brush your teeth properly. One of the advantages of electric toothbrushes is that they have a built-in timer which reminds you when you’ve brushed long enough. I know we’re all adults here, but if you still require someone to remind you when you’ve brushed long enough, then an electric toothbrush is a good option for you.

Question 4: Costs

Electric toothbrushes and replacement brushheads cost more than manual toothbrushes do. If you’re doing a good enough job with a manual toothbrush then you don’t need to worry about upgrading to an electric toothbrush. However, if you’re not brushing with a manual brush as well as you should then investing in an electric toothbrush is highly recommended. Trust us, an electric toothbrush costs far, far less than invasive dental treatment which results from poor oral hygiene!

Questions 5 through 7: Toothbrush abrasion

Brushing too hard is a much more common problem than you  may think. Many of us mistakenly brush our teeth as hard as possible, thinking that brushing hard is going to clean our teeth better. This is not true. Brushing too hard gradually damages your teeth and gum lines by physically destroying these tissues. This condition is referred to as toothbrush abrasion. Hard brushing causes teeth roots to become exposed and leads to sensitivity on most, if not all, of your back teeth.

If you have generalized tooth sensitivity, then you may be suffering from toothbrush abrasion. Consider switching to an electric toothbrush if you’re currently using a manual toothbrush. Otherwise, start brushing gentler and make sure to use a soft toothbrush over a hard one. Consider purchasing an electric toothbrush with pressure sensors to better assist you in brushing your teeth gentler.

Question 8: Ask for your dentist or hygienist’s opinion

Your dentist or hygienist are probably best suited to determine if you’re brushing as well as you should be. Talk to them to see if they feel that you’re doing a good enough job brushing your teeth or if they recommend switching to an electric toothbrush. Many dentists are too busy to sit down and talk to you about this topic voluntarily. However, if you ask for their opinion they will usually be glad to help you decide which type of toothbrush works better for your particular case.

Good candidate for using a manual toothbrush

If you answered “no” to most of the above questions then you’re probably doing fine with your manual toothbrush and there’s no need to switch. If anything, just pay more attention to your brushing techniques and how long you brush your teeth. Changing your toothbrush or your brushing habits should only be considered if you are either not doing a good enough job of removing plaque from your teeth or if you’re damaging teeth and gum tissue by brushing too hard. Otherwise there really is no need to interrupt your current routine if it has been working well for you thus far.

Final thought on type of toothbrush

Most of us enjoy the convenience and predictability that comes with electric toothbrushes. As a result we tend to stick with better brushing techniques and longer brushing times as compared to manual toothbrushes. Keep in mind that we need to brush twice a day for 2 minutes each time. This adds up being over 1,800 hours of brushing during a lifetime. That is a lot of brushing! Having automatic brushhead motion along with a built-in timer are wonderful features to help make brushing your teeth more effective.  As such, investing in an electric toothbrush is usually a worthwhile investment. Just don’t forget when it’s time for a replacement brushhead!

Is an electric toothbrush always better for eliminating toothbrush abrasion?

We mentioned that a major advantage of using an electric toothbrush is that it allows more controlled pressure. This generally makes it harder to damage your teeth and gums and reduces toothbrush abrasion. However, this can not be said of every case. Some people actually do more damage by using an electric toothbrush aggressively against their teeth and gums.

You can cause toothbrush abrasion with either type of toothbrush, electric or manual. If you’re still applying excessive pressure to your teeth and gums while using an electric toothbrush, then you might want to consider reverting back to a manual one instead. Go with a toothbrush with softer bristols and work on your technique. Alternatively, consider purchasing an electric toothbrush with a builtin pressure sensor. Talk to your dentist to make sure you’re using the right toothbrush, correct brushing technique as well as applying the right amount of pressure.

NEXT >> What are the benefits of an electric toothbrush?

What are the benefits of a manual toothbrush?

Benefits of Manual Toothbrush

Electric or manual toothbrush?

Before electric toothbrushes were invented, we all relied on manual toothbrushes to clean our teeth. In order to properly brush your teeth, you need to dedicate enough time to cover every tooth surface. 2 minutes is about the average time required to properly brush your teeth. You need to make sure to place the brush at the right angle on your teeth and apply gentle circular motions to clean teeth surfaces. Be careful not to brush too hard as you can actually damage your teeth and gums from brushing too hard. Here is a list of benefits of manual toothbrush over an electric one:

What are the benefits of a manual toothbrush?

Here are some benefits of manual toothbrushes over electric ones:

Manual toothbrush is much more affordable

While electric toothbrushes are much more tech-savvy than manual ones, they are also much more expensive. In fact a brand name electric toothbrush, such as sonicare or oral-B, can cost as much as 100 times what a manual toothbrush costs.

Even the replacement cost for electric toothbrush brushheads alone is more than purchasing a new manual toothbrush. While quality electric toothbrushes last many years, they don’t necessarily last forever either.  They may break down or you might want to replace them after several years due to cross-contamination of bacteria.

It’s easier to replace the toothbrush

You need to replace either your toothbrush or brushhead about every 3 to 4 months. Toothbrush bristols lose their effectiveness and must be replaced within a few months. Overusing a brush makes the toothbrush bristols lose its effectiveness. They start to harbor harmful bacteria and also become more abrasive which can damage your teeth and gums.

If you have a manual toothbrush, it’s easier to replace your brush. You can always change to a different brand if you so choose to as well. With electric toothbrushes not only are you stuck with whatever brand you bought, but it can also be harder to keep track of when you last replaced the brushhead. As a result many users tend to overuse their brushheads for much longer than they’re supposed to.

A manual toothbrush can be just as effective as an electric one when used correctly

If you use correct brushing techniques, brush for two minutes and pay attention not to press too hard on your gums, then there’s no substantial difference between using an electric or manual toothbrush. They are both just as effective in removing plaque and food particles from your teeth surfaces. Just pay attention to make sure you are indeed using your manual toothbrush the right way:

  • Apply the right amount of pressure, don’t press too hard
  • Position the toothbrush at the right angles against your teeth
  • Move your toothbrush in gentle, circular motions
  • Make sure to cover all teeth surfaces
  • Take your time to do a good job and don’t rush through brushing

NEXT >> 8 Questions to help you decide which type of toothbrush to go with

What are the benefits of an electric toothbrush?