We all know the basics, that we should brush our teeth twice a day, for two minutes using a soft-bristled toothbrush, per the American Dental Association. And electric toothbrushes are way easier and much more effective than manual ones at giving you that minty-fresh feeling. But there’s a dizzying array of electric toothbrushes out there with a host of functions and forms for kids and adults.
First things first, ultrasonic is the gold standard. “Ultrasonic energy cleans further and breaks up the plaque better,” says family dentist Dr. Hilary Fritsch, the founder of The Brushies for kids. “Research shows that ultrasonic brushes clean better, especially for kids, who don’t have great coordination.”
So which one to choose? Do you need a basic workhorse that has one setting, or are you a dental diva who’s all about customization? Because these days, if you’re willing to spend, you can hook up your toothbrush to its very own app, which will tell you when you’re brushing too hard, ignoring certain areas, or just being a slacker.
Here are some of our top picks to give your oral hygiene a major boost, covering all price points.
If you don't have the two minutes you need for a proper brush, then the Triple Bristle is your savior. It has a three-sided sonic toothbrush which means it cleans your teeth one-third faster.
Pros: Not only does this sonic electric toothbrush clean your teeth fast. But it does so using indicator bristles that let you know when it’s time to change them. Plus, your mouth is full of micro-bubbles, which give you an extra deep clean. It’s great for kids with braces or folks with dental implants.
Cons: For those who want a truly deep clean, this brush doesn’t seem to have enough pressure.
This electric toothbrush allows you to customize your brush settings with three modes and three intensities, so use the lower one for more-sensitive mouths.
Pros: This electric toothbrush has three modes and three intensities. It can help remove surface stains. There’s a gum care mode, so you can take care of your gums. And there’s the BrushSync feature to track how you long you’ve been using your brush head for, and how hard you’ve been brushing. The travel case is great for brushers on the go.
Cons: Three modes may not be enough for those of us who need extra brushing TLC.
This brilliant toothbrush does all the thinking for you, and it tells you if you're missing any areas, if you're over-brushing or if you need to tread lightly and be more gentle. The toothbrush connects to your phone with its own app, tracks your brushing prowess and you can choose between six, yes six, different cleaning modes to find the ideal one for you, as needed.
Pros: Simply turn it on, and let it get to work. It’s especially great for unmotivated brushers or those of us who need to pay extra attention to make sure they’re getting the job done.
Cons: It’s a whole lot of toothbrush, and the price isn’t all that easy to swallow.
You can banish brushing uncertainty thanks to a feature called BrushSync, which tracks how you long you've been using your brush head, how hard you've been brushing, and when it's time to replace the brush head. A light on your handle lets you know it's time to make that switch.
Pros: If you’re someone who hacks away at your teeth, this ultrasonic electric toothbrush makes a subtle pulsing sound to let you know that it’s time to tone things down. It has two weeks of battery life when fully charged. And it reminds you when to change your brush heads.
Cons: This specific model has one cleaning mode, so not much of a variety if that’s your jam.
If you haven't used a sonic brush before, then this affordable powerhouse is a great entry point. It comes with five different cleaning modes, and the charge lasts for hours. This crazy-affordable and highly rated sonic toothbrush delivers 40,000 micro-brushes per minute and removes plaque like a pro.
Pros: The price sure tastes sweet for someone not willing to spend a ton on a new dental gadget.
Cons: Customers say that in some cases, it won’t hold the charge, and it can be too rough on your choppers.
This is Amazon's top-selling electric toothbrush. It gets the job done, without any bells and whistles, and alerts you when you've brushed for the recommended two minutes. It's ideal for older kids, who don't need 900 different settings.
Pros: This electronic toothbrush is solid, reliable and basic, at the right price.
Cons: If you do want all the tricked-out options, this is not your brush.
The brush has a KidTimer to make sure he brushes for two minutes, and a KidPacer to make sure every quadrant of the mouth is cleaned. It makes it fun and teaches kids how to thoroughly brush their teeth, something that's especially valuable for those who think one swipe across your teeth is enough.
Pros: This electric toothbrush is custom-built to get kids to brush properly. If this is your cross to bear, here is your brush.
Cons: It’s a bit on the pricier side, no question about it.
Here is your best all-around value buy. If you're willing to spend a bit more, get this potent brush, which has a built-in pressure sensor that lets you know if you're brushing too hard. Plus, the brush automatically selects the right cleaning mode and intensity level for you.
Pros: How often have you bought replacement brush heads, only to find that they’re not compatible with the one on your sink? This model works with all Philips Sonicare click-on brush heads, which makes things a whole lot easier.
Cons: Some customers say this brush is too harsh for sensitive teeth and gums, so either tread lightly, or choose another one.
The Quip is adorable and handy, and it automatically lets you get replacement brush heads in the mail so you don’t need to worry about ever running out, or using gross, worn ones. It’s aesthetically-pleasing and simple to use.
Pros: This popular electric toothbrush is easy to use, has great design, and one of the best picks for travel.
Cons: This brush is not ultrasonic, so you don’t get the same level of cleaning.
This is the Ferrari of toothbrushes. When you brush too hard, the ring on the toothbrush turns purple, so you go easier. It also lets you fully customize your brushing routine by choosing between five different modes and three intensity settings.
Pros: The DiamondClean electric toothbrush has a visual pressure sensor to alert you when you are brushing too hard, which can damage your gums.
Cons: The price. Before you take this particular plunge, figure out if you’re really going to use everything this brush offers, or whether something simpler is a better choice.
If you hate to floss, get this immediately. You'll have no more excuses. It's one device, with a sonic brush plus a water flosser that has a 360 degree rotating tip and only needs one outlet.
Pros: You get the ultimate two-in-one situation here: A robust electric sonic toothbrush with two speeds, plus a water flosser that gets out out crumbs and bits of spinach.
Cons: The brush itself is fairly basic, with two settings, and customers complain fairly consistently about the weak battery life. But hey, if this is what gets you to get hunks of rotten food out of your teeth, buy it now.
The Burst is a new entrant in the sonic toothbrush market, but our dentist expert swears by it. You get major dental bang for the price. The brush comes with soft binchotan charcoal bristles and delivers 33,000 sonic vibrations per minute. Plaque doesn't stand a chance.
Pros: Every 30 seconds, you feel a gentle reminder that you need to move to another quadrant of your mouth to cover every part of it. And it’s great for sensitive teeth.
Cons: It’s not an entry-level brush, price-wise, but is plenty affordable.
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