Does an Electric Toothbrush Work Better Electric vs. Manual Toothbrushes

Does an Electric Toothbrush Work Better? Electric vs. Manual Toothbrushes

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If you’ve done any research on whether an electric toothbrush is better than a manual toothbrush, you may have discovered conflicting reports.

Truth is that the first electric toothbrush models weren’t much to write home about. However, with recent advancements in technology, they are far better than they’ve ever been. Still, you might be wondering, “Does an electric toothbrush work better?”

It’s important to remember that since dentists often suggest patients use electric toothbrushes over manual ones, there must be a little weight behind the advice. Read on to learn about why electric toothbrushes are considered a solid choice.

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Reduction of Plaque

One well-known benefit of electric toothbrushes is that they help reduce the total amount of plaque on your teeth by at least 21% more than a manual toothbrush, according to Consumer Reports.

Plaque is the number one cause of gingivitis, a disease relating to the inflammation of your gums and causing discomfort and bleeding. The more plaque you’re able to get rid of by brushing your teeth, the healthier your teeth and gums will be.

Research shows that using an electric toothbrush helps reduce the prevalence of gingivitis by at least 11%. improvement can be made just by simply switching from manual to electric toothbrushes.

Getting into Hard to Reach Areas

Another distinct advantage of an electric toothbrush is that it gives you more control over the hard-to-reach areas of your mouth. Most electric toothbrush heads are substantially smaller than those on manual toothbrushes.  That feature makes it easier for bristles to get in between your teeth and to brush along your gums.

Depending on the type of electric toothbrush you choose, you may have a model that comes with an oscillating head or a rotating head that turns and twists the bristles in different directions for optimal cleaning power.

In comparison to manual toothbrushes where the bristles only move in one direction, an electric model is much better at getting rid of hidden plague not visible to the naked eye. This is a clear indication that easily answers the question, “Does an electric toothbrush work better?” An electric toothbrush really helps to get more bacteria out of your mouth.

Prevention of Excessive Brushing

You might be surprised to know that the vast majority of people either brush their teeth too hard or for too long. Overdoing the task doesn’t necessarily get your teeth cleaner but it does cause your gums to start receding. Your teeth depend on healthy gums to stay firmly in place.  The more this vital foundation deteriorates, the more likely your teeth are to fall out.

With an electric toothbrush, you’ll have access to a brushing timer that alerts you when you’ve reached the maximum amount of brushing time. Not only does this protect your teeth, it also gives you enough time to make sure you’re accessing every area of your mouth. For even more control, try to find a model that gives you 30-second increments. That alerts makes it easy to shift from one quadrant of your mouth to another for the most ultimate clean.

Reducing Sensitivity

If you deal with sensitive teeth, it’s probably a little self-inflicted based on how you brushed your teeth in the past. If you are dealing with the beginning stages of gingivitis, you’re undoubtedly going to notice bleeding and inflamed gums as well as sensitive teeth. The better you are at brushing, the less sensitive your teeth will become.

Electric toothbrushes are designed to deliver a thorough and deep clean by removing plaque and food debris.  Complete plaque removal gives your gums the time they need to heal to help support your overall dental health and comfort.

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Great for Braces

Electric toothbrushes aren’t only beneficial for people who don’t have to visit an orthodontist, but also for individuals with braces and retainers as well. It can be almost impossible to keep a clean smile when you’re using a manual toothbrush unless you want to spend a lot of time working around every bracket and bar.

With an electric toothbrush, the specially designed ortho-oscillating heads are phenomenal for getting into every nook and cranny of your braces, giving you a deeper clean than ever before.

As an added benefit, when you start brushing with an electric toothbrush you’re going to spend less time in the bathroom in the morning and evening.  Within two minutes, the majority of the plaque disappears.

Ideal for Individuals with Dexterity Concerns

Compared to manual toothbrushes, electric models are a superior choice for people dealing with dexterity issues or restrictions in wrist movement, such as those with arthritis. If you’re unable to move your wrist as you once did when you were younger, brushing with a manual brush might seem like it’s far too much of a task. An electric toothbrush does most of the hard work for you.

This benefit also makes an electric model far better for young children.  Parents can guarantee that every tooth is receiving a dentist-like clean, preserving the integrity of your child’s smile.


Before you decide on an electric toothbrush, it’s always important to ask yourself, does an electric toothbrush work better? Although electric toothbrushes may cost more than traditional manual toothbrushes, you can’t put a price on health and convenience.

About the Author Dr. Greg

Dr. Greg's experience in dentistry spans over 25 years serving patients of all ages. He's an advisor to and a consultant to many professional dental projects.