Should Your Child Use an Electric or Manual Toothbrush?

Brushing your child’s teeth is the foundation of good oral care, but many parents wonder if using an electric or manual toothbrush is better. According to the American Dental Association, both electric and manual toothbrushes have advantages are effective in removing oral plaque, the cause of decay and gum disease.

The Top Benefits of Electric Toothbrushes

There are two types of technologies used in electric toothbrushes: oscillating and sonic. Oscillating toothbrushes come with smaller, round heads that turn quickly in one direction and then the other at a rate of 2,500 to 7,000 strokes per minute to clean your child’s teeth. Sonic toothbrushes use sonic technology to make the brush vibrate at 30,000 to 40,000 strokes per minute.

hand holding electronic toothbrush
Advantages of Using Electric Toothbrushes
  • Generally have a larger handle making them easier to hold
  • Children find them exciting and may be more likely to use them longer and more often
  • Highly effective at removing plaque

The Top Benefits of Manual Toothbrushes

Manual toothbrushes come in many styles and hardness of bristles like the electric counterparts. With manual brushes, the heads of the brush do not move on their own and the brush is powered by the user’s motion.

hand holding manualtoothbrush
Advantages of Using Manual Toothbrushes
  • Can be less intimidating to younger children
  • Easier to control the motion of the brush
  • Highly effective at removing plaque

Choosing the Best Toothbrush for Your Child

Deciding whether a manual or electric toothbrush is better for your child depends on several factors, the most important of which is which your child can use alone most effectively. No matter which you choose it is important to:

  • Choose the right size head for the brush
  • Choose soft bristles
  • Monitor your child’s brushing
  • Follow-up with parental help for young children
  • Have your child brush regularly
  • Choose toothbrushes with the ADA Seal of Acceptance

If you have questions about which brush is best for your child, call Lil’ Smile Builders today. We can help provide some guidance and recommendations based on your child’s specific needs.