Chances are you’ve bought your toothbrushes from your grocery store or local pharmacy for as long as you can remember. You have a brand that you love, a manual toothbrush that fits well in your mouth, has the kind of bristles that you like, and costs less than $5.
When your dentist suggests you buy a power toothbrush instead, you might go into sticker shock. Power brushes, also called electric toothbrushes, can cost more than $200 depending on the brand and the effectiveness proven during clinical studies. Can a power toothbrush really make that much difference in your oral hygiene?
"There’s no comparison," said Dr. Oliver Roberts, a dentist in Lutz, FL. Dr. Roberts has been helping patients for more than 30 years and is now practicing at the Coast Dental Willow Bend office. Dr. Roberts said power toothbrushes like InteliSonic™ and Revolation™ are gaining popularity for several reasons. Coast Dental offers them at a discount to customers: $89 for the InteliSonic and $99 for the Revolation.
They’re more effective. "They brush more than 30,000 strokes per minute instead of the 100 or so strokes per minute you get with a manual toothbrush," Dr. Roberts said. Plus, clinical studies show the InteliSonic and Revolation power toothbrushes remove significantly more plaque from teeth, in between teeth and the gumline than a manual toothbrush.
Both the InteliSonic and Revolation feature a UV sanitizer, which kills common bacteria and viruses on the bristles. "They kill up to 99.9% of common bacteria and viruses. The effectiveness rate of killing the H1N1 virus is at 96.8%," Dr. Roberts said. The sanitizer is included in the cost of the power brush.
They can be easier to use. You just need to guide them along the teeth and gum line and the brush does the work. "The handles are bigger, so they’re easier to grip, which helps older patients in particular," Dr. Roberts said.
You can save money. Yes, a power toothbrush costs more than a traditional toothbrush you can purchase at any convenience store. But it’s still much cheaper than the cost of having a cavity filled or periodontal disease treated.
You can clean better around braces and bridges. The Revolation comes with a tapered brush head that fits well under and around bridges, braces, wires, brackets and other orthodontic devices. That helps reduce the amount of bacteria that accumulates in those typically hard-to-reach areas.
You brush for the dentist-recommended amount of time. Both power toothbrushes have a built-in timer so it’s easier to know when the recommended two minutes are up.
Both the InteliSonic and Revolation toothbrushes naturally whiten teeth.
The environmentally-safe battery lasts up to 10 days, so it’s easy to take with you on vacation or business trips.
It’s fun to use. For the same reason kids like to use spin brushes, adults like to use the power toothbrushes. They’re easy, the vibration feels good, and your mouth feels cleaner when you’re finished.
Brushing your teeth consistently and effectively is the best way to keep plaque at a minimum, and reduce your risk of developing cavities and periodontal disease. If you have any questions about whether a power toothbrush is right for you, ask your dentist.
Lutz dentist Oliver Roberts, DMD, has been a practicing dentist since 1979. He provides general dentistry services to patients starting at age 12. His services include bone grafting, dental implant restorations, extractions, periodontal disease management and veneers. His office is located at 23036 State Road 54, Suite 403, Lutz, FL 33549.
Written By: Beth Gaddis
Reviewed By: Oliver Roberts, DMD
Reviewed By: Charbel Klaib, DMD
Reviewed By: Cindy Roark, DMD