So, you're about to get braces(or you've just had them put in) and it dawns on you. You've got an electric tooth brush. Is that going to damage your expensive new braces? Can you use an electric toothbrush with braces?
You'll be happy to hear that the answer is, 'yes'. You certainly can use an electric toothbrush for cleaning your braces, but is it better than a regular toothbrush? We'll spend a little time in this article answering that question for you and giving you a little insight into the features of the modern electric toothbrush, plus some cleaning tips as well. Let's get started.
Standard or electric toothbrush for braces?
This is going to be a matter of personal preference, actually. You can use either. Some prefer the manual toothbrush for the sake of tradition or the good feeling that comes after a vigorous cleaning. Others prefer the electric toothbrush, for all the bells and whistles that come with it. It's almost like having your own mini dentist-robot. This is because electric toothbrushes have come a long way from the original vibrating brush that you may have experienced. Modern features that may come with today's models are as follows:
- Sensor technology - Some electric toothbrushes have sensitivity settings that can alert you if you are brushing too hard. This is a great feature if you have braces and you are worried about damaging them with your electric toothbrush.
- Quad pacer - A quad pacer is a neat little feature. This seperates a brushing period of 2 minutes into 4 30 second intervals, so that you can divide the sections of your teeth into 4 quadrants and ensure 30 seconds of brushing in each.
- App features - Some modern electric toothbrushes come with applications that can tell you which angles are optimal for brushing and determine if you are employing them. Some even include game apps for kids to make brushing fun! It's definitely the age of the smart-brush.
- Multiple Brush-heads - Most models will feature multiple brush-head options, so that you can clean effectively no matter the tooth or the angle.
- Transition features - Some models can start at lower rates of vibrations and oscillations so that you can get adjusted to your new toothbrush. Wow!
- Subscription services - This is one of the latest trends and something that you can take advantage of. Are you always forgetting to replace your brush-heads? No problem. Subscription services can send you a new brush-head every month to make sure that you are always using one that is clean and not stiffened from use. Pretty convenient, no?
With all of these features you are probably wondering, 'what are the downsides?'. Well, there are a few
that can be listed. Here are the 'cons' on the list that you will need to consider if you wish to purchase an electric toothbrush(hey, there are pros and cons to everything, we're just being thorough here!):
- Cost factors - Some of the high end models can set you back a decent amount of cash.
- Sensitive teeth concerns - If you have sensitive teeth, the brush may tickle a bit. It might be sensible to try a low end brush first to see if an electric toothbrush for cleaning your teeth after braces is a good fit for you.
- Don't drop it - If your fancy electric toothbrush has a lot of bells and whistles to it, there is also a chance that the electronics are delicate. This is not an issue with a manual toothbrush but then a manual toothbrush cannot coach you on proper brush angles, either.
“Hold your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle for maximum cleaning.”
Using an electric toothbrush with braces is actually quite easy. Is an electric toothbrush actually better for braces? That depends on your current technique, really. So how do you brush your teeth with braces?
Tips for cleaning your teeth with braces
- Angle - You should hold your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle for maximum cleaning. Don't take just our word for it, though. This is a recommendation from dentists as well! Ask your dentist if you don't believe us.
- Avoid too much pressure - Applying too much pressure directly on the braces when cleaning could damage them. All you need to do is lightly touch and the electric toothbrush will do the rest. If you are using a regular toothbrush, just brush very lightly and make sure that your toothbrush has soft bristles. If it hasn't been replaced in awhile, get a new one. You don't want to risk damage to your braces.
- Clean between braces - Make sure and clean the spaces in between the braces. You can clean the braces themselves as well, just be careful about the pressure as we've mentioned before and you will be okay.
- Clean behind your teeth - We want to be thorough, after all. You can't just clean the front of your teeth.
- Brush your tongue - Don't forget this basic of oral hygiene. Bacteria hides here and if your goal is a clean mouth then this is a spot that you can't miss. Brushing your tongue will also give you sweeter breath, so don't forget!
- Replace the brush-heads - Every three months it is a good idea to replace your brush-heads if you are using an electric toothbrush. This will make sure that you aren't too rough on your braces when you are cleaning.
The bottom line
You were wondering 'can I use an electric toothbrush with braces?' and we feel that this should be well and truly answered at this point. Not only can you use them, but they have a number of features that make them just a little superior to brushing with a standard toothbrush(unless you possess an extreme attention to detail). Go out and get a lower end model and give it a try. Your braces will surely thank you for it!