West 85th Dental
8561 8A Ave SW Calgary AB T3H 0V5 (403) 246-5545

(587) 355-4332

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toothbrushes Hero

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Toothbrush

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Maintaining good oral hygiene plays a big role in our overall health. Toothbrushes, of course, are an essential part of our oral hygiene routine, but which toothbrush is best? When choosing the right toothbrush for you, it’s important to consider the bristle type, toothbrush type, and the overall shape, quality, and comfort. 

Hard vs. Soft Toothbrushes

According to the Canadian Dental Association, soft bristles are best when choosing a toothbrush. Although it might seem like hard bristles clean your teeth better, you should pick a toothbrush with soft bristles. 

Medium or hard bristles can actually damage your teeth and gums as you brush. This is especially true if you brush too hard, which many people do. Combined with brushing too hard, the wrong type of bristles can cause toothbrush abrasion, or the loss of enamel, as well as gum irritation. 

Another factor to consider is the tips of the bristles. Your toothbrush bristles should have rounded tips to gently brush your teeth and prevent damage to your teeth and gums.

Electric vs. Manual Toothbrushes

While many electric toothbrushes come with prestigious recommendations and compelling statistics about their cleaning power, manual toothbrushes can work just as well. Both electric and manual toothbrushes can clean your teeth effectively. Some people prefer electric toothbrushes. They work well for people who don’t brush for as long or as thoroughly as they should, especially children. People with disabilities or arthritis may also find electric toothbrushes helpful, as they help make brushing easier.

electric and manual toothbrushes side by side

Other people, however, don’t like how electric toothbrushes feel on their teeth or in their mouth. Cost is another important factor to consider. In addition to the upfront cost of electric toothbrushes, you’ll still need to replace the brush head every three months. 

If you aren’t prepared to spend the extra money or you simply don’t like how electric toothbrushes feel, then a manual toothbrush is the better option for you.  

Overall Quality & Shape

When choosing a toothbrush, it’s important to choose one from a reputable brand. While the really cheap, no-name brand toothbrushes can be tempting, a proper toothbrush is an investment in your health.

Cheaper toothbrushes may be unsanitary or unsafe, as they’re not held to the same manufacturing standards as many name brands. Bargain toothbrushes can shed bristles and some don’t have rounded bristle tips. If you’re unsure of which toothbrush to buy, your dentist can make a recommendation for you at your next dental exam and cleaning

father and daughter brushing teeth together in bathroom

As for the shape of your brush head, there is no standard shape that works the best. Whether you choose a toothbrush that is oval or rectangular, the best choice for you is whatever fits most comfortably in your mouth. The same goes for the toothbrush handle. Make sure you pick a toothbrush that is comfortable to hold and maneuver. 

In most cases, a smaller brush head will clean your teeth more effectively, especially for children or people who have smaller mouths. Smaller brushes allow you to reach all of your teeth, including the hard to reach areas at the back of your mouth. 

The Best Toothbrush Is the One You’ll Use

Ultimately, the best toothbrush for you is the one that you’ll use regularly and properly. An expensive electric toothbrush is useless if you don’t use it. Pick the toothbrush that works best for you (just make sure you’re replacing it every three months!). If you have questions about choosing a toothbrush or anything else related to your oral health, we’re here to help. Book an appointment for your dental exam or consultation for you and your family at our SW Calgary location. 


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  • Written by Dr. Reena Kaloti

    Dr. Kaloti enjoys helping people, both at personally and professionally, and have fun while doing so. She always knew she wanted a job that allowed her to do that, and spent her childhood babysitting, lifeguarding, teaching swimming lessons, and volunteering in the geriatrics unit of her local hospital. She enjoys working with patients of all ages.

    Dr. Kaloti started studying dentistry in 2000 and graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with her DMD. After practicing dentistry for five years, she decided to take some time to focus on building her family. When she returned to work, Dr. Kaloti and Dr. Minhas decided to partner up and open up West 85th Dental. Their vision was to create a warm, inviting office and a pleasant and relaxing experience that would make their patients look forward to visiting.

    At West 85th Dental, we pride ourselves on providing comprehensive dental care to all our patients by providing thorough examinations, explaining our findings clearly, educating our patients about oral hygiene, and providing multiple treatment options that allow our patients to make educated decisions about their health and care.

    When Dr. Kaloti is not seeing patients, she spends her time doing charity runs, water sports, pilates, and spending time with her family.

    More Articles by Dr. Reena Kaloti

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    • 2110, 8561 – 8A Ave, SW,
    • Calgary, AB T3H 0V5

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