The first bristle toothbrush was invented by the Chinese somewhere around the 15th-16th centuries...with bristles made of wild hog hair.
Fast forward a few centuries, and toothbrushes have come a long way. At this point, you can find hundreds of toothbrushes stuffed onto convenience store shelves, and millions more are just a mouse click away....the options are overwhelming!
Well, we’re here to help you sift through those overwhelming options. Not all toothbrushes are created equal. And, although we hate to say it...not all brushers are created equal either. It’s important to understand the way you brush, what feels good, and your mouth’s specific needs.
Your search for the perfect brush can take some research and maybe a little trial and error. But, finding the right match for you can make all the difference. For instance, choosing the right toothbrush can help you...
- Get the most out of your toothpaste (perhaps, your favorite premium natural toothpaste?).
- Maintain a healthy oral microbiome (that fancy bacteria city in your mouth that’s connected to your gut health, mental health, and systemic disease).
- Not hate brushing...which is important since you’re supposed to do it at least twice a day.
Alright, let’s floss through some toothbrush options.
importance of choosing the right toothbrush
So, you already know that there’s no “one-size-fits-all” option when it comes to toothbrushes. The best toothbrush for your personal needs will depend on a variety of things, such as:
- How hard you brush
- How long you naturally brush (we know, two minutes can feel long)
- Sensitivity of your teeth and gums
- Your dexterity
- Your dental history
- Budget (there are some fancy brushes out there)
- Other personal preferences
Choosing the right toothbrush allows you to more effectively care for your oral microbiome. Specifically, Davids Natural Toothpaste is fortified with ingredients that aim to reduce plaque, freshen your breath, and balance your oral microbiome. But if your toothbrush isn’t reaching and effectively cleaning every part of your mouth (like those hard-to-reach areas behind your molars), you might not be getting the most out of your natural toothpaste.
And we definitely don’t want that.
different types of toothbrushes + who they work best for
With such an array of options out there, we’ve lined up a few criteria to help you narrow down what’s best for you and your smile!
electric toothbrush vs manual
The question that keeps everyone up at night...oh, just us?
Anyways, you should consider an electric toothbrush if:
- Getting through two minutes of brushing feels like pulling teeth
- You zone out and have no concept of time when you brush
- Your manual dexterity is limited
- You tend to brush too hard
- Your dentist tells you that your teeth don’t seem clean from your manual toothbrush
An 11-year study of electric vs manual toothbrushes confirmed the benefits of electric toothbrushes. The study found that long-term use of electric toothbrushes effectively cleaned teeth and reduced periodontal (gum) disease.
But this doesn't mean electric toothbrushes are always the way to go. If your mouth feels uncomfortable with the vibrations of an electric toothbrush, then you may be better off with a manual toothbrush. At the end of the day, enjoying the everyday ritual of brushing is essential.
soft vs hard toothbrush bristles
You’ll want to choose the type of toothbrush bristles depending on how hard you brush and how sensitive your mouth is. On the convenience store shelves, you’ll find a few different types of toothbrush bristles: extra-soft, soft, and medium-soft. Because most dentists recommend soft bristles, you won’t find hard-bristled (aka firm-bristled) toothbrushes over the counter.
Here are a few things to consider when you’re choosing your toothbrush bristle type:
- If you know you tend to brush hard, go with soft or extra-soft bristles. Brushing too hard with harder bristles could harm your enamel and gums.
- If you go with an electric toothbrush, you may want to ensure that the bristles are soft, since the rotation and vibration can add extra pressure.
- If you’ve tried a toothbrush with soft or extra-soft bristles and it feels like it’s not doing the trick, try medium-soft. Otherwise, you can stick with softer bristles...but make sure they’re multi-layered or angled for a deeper clean.
Always remember, more pressure does not equal cleaner teeth! This can actually contribute to receding gums. As always, be sure to talk to your dentist about what bristles suit your needs.
If you’re a perfectionist (which we completely understand), you’ll want to consider the toothbrush head size+type as well as the kind of toothbrush handle you want. There are so many different shapes, sizes, and materials out there. You’ll want to keep a few things in mind.
- How easy is it to hold and maneuver your toothbrush? If you’re opting for an electric option, remember it’ll be moving! Choose one that will easily fit in your hand.
- Do you care about sustainability? We do too. If you’re choosing a manual option, consider a bamboo toothbrush, since it will biodegrade over time.
- Do you struggle to reach certain spots in your mouth with your current toothbrush? You may want to consider a smaller, angled toothbrush head. But with a smaller head, you’ll want to make sure you’re giving each pearly white enough attention.
We know, there’s a lot to consider here! But it helps to know that taking the time to find the right toothbrush will help you get the most out of your oral care routine and natural toothpaste.
how to keep your perfect toothbrush clean
You’ve spent all this time+energy selecting the perfect toothbrush, and now all you want to do is keep it safe. We get it…..a lot of bacteria circulates in the bathroom. So, we wanted to share a few tips (natural, of course) for keeping your perfect toothbrush safe.
- Rinse it with hot water for 15 seconds before and after use.
- Let it dry completely after use. If you put a toothbrush cap on when it’s still wet, it can actually grow more bacteria.
- Avoid keeping your toothbrush next to other toothbrushes.
- Keep it as far from the toilet as possible. If you can, keep it away from the sink, too. This seems counterintuitive, but bacteria and dirty water can splash onto your brush!
- Create a mixture of vinegar, water, and baking soda. To disinfect your toothbrush, soak it in the mixture for 30 minutes.
- If you use a toothbrush holder, clean it regularly by handwashing it with dish soap.
Of course, you really should replace your toothbrush every three months. It’s also a good idea to replace it anytime you’re sick.
We hope this advice helps you on your search for the perfect toothbrush....or should we call it, the perfect vehicle for the best natural toothpaste.