Can you judge a toothbrush by its bristles?

Ever wondered what you should look for when choosing a new toothbrush? We’re here to help!

Toothbrushes don’t last forever. When the bristles start to fray, they’re no longer as effective – not to mention the build-up of bacteria that happens over time. A good rule of thumb is to change your toothbrush with the seasons: around every three months. So, when the time comes, arm yourself with the following advice to avoid standing staring aimlessly at the shelves of toothbrushes in the shops, wondering which one to choose!

Electric v. manual
This is one of the questions we’re most often asked in regards to toothbrush choice. Electric toothbrushes aren’t, in themselves, better at brushing than manual ones. However, they do help you brush more efficiently and are also easier for most people to handle, which means you’re more likely to brush for the required time. These are especially recommended for those with physical challenges such as arthritis, for anyone with braces and for children – especially the musical ones that encourage them to keep brushing.

Soft v. hard
What about the bristles – do harder brushes clean better? No! For most people, actually, medium is the recommended option – soft if you suffer from sensitivity. It may feel like a harder scrub provides a better clean, but it won’t remove stains and tartar (only your hygienist can do that) and actually you’ll just risk damaging your enamel and gums. When it comes to brushing, gently and often is best. Many people also find brushing with softer bristles to be a far more pleasant experience, making them feel more inclined to brush for the full two minutes twice daily.

Tongue v. no tongue
Having a tongue scraper on the back side of the bristles is a newer trend that might make you more likely to remember to clean your tongue, but the scraper itself is not necessary. You can just as easily brush your tongue with the bristles – and will probably get a better clean. Either way, you should clean your tongue every time you brush your teeth, to remove built-up bacteria that causes plaque – and bad breath!

Plastic v. bamboo
Toothbrushes have long been made of plastic, which is easy to keep clean and therefore more sanitary than some alternatives. The downside, of course, is all those plastic toothbrushes being thrown into landfill every three months! Environmentally-conscious shoppers are increasingly turning to eco-friendly toothbrushes made from either recycled plastics or biodegradable materials, such as bamboo. Innovations in technology mean they can stay just as germ-free as their plastic counterparts – and simply get thrown on the compost heap when their time’s up!

Red v. blue
This one’s entirely up to you! Choose a colour that reflects your personality and makes you smile – you’ll be more likely to enjoy brushing. It’s probably more important when shopping for children that they like the looks of their toothbrushes. Luckily, character and child-themed brushes abound – you’re sure to find one that suits your little pirate or mermaid!


Remember that even the best brush in the world can’t replace the need for twice yearly hygienist visits. Book yours today online or by calling us on 01482 565488!