In the race to achieve maximum automation and facilitation, dental health is not far behind. With the introduction of smart toothbrushes saving your teeth from cavities and gum diseases might just have become easier than it has ever been in the past.
Electrical toothbrushes have been in the market for over a decade now already known to offer better plaque removal than a conventional toothbrush. Simple additions to the technology such as two-minute timers, which is the recommended duration for brushing, have been known to improve oral health by increasing the duration of brushing in patients.
What is the `smart` technology in a brush?
With increasing advancements and introduction of `smart-technologies`, the true need of the patients can be addressed today. Smart-toothbrushes can do more than just monitor the duration of brushing. They can monitor the correct angulations of 45 degrees from the surface of the tooth, duration of brushing on each tooth, prompt after each tooth has been sufficiently brushed and record time spent on each surface based on that particular tooth. This function may be sensitive based on the type of tooth; with longer time spent on the three surface molars(back teeth) as oppose to two surfaces of the incisors (front teeth). Additionally monitoring pressure exerted while brushing, whether it is adequate or inadequate. These functions are recorded each time, in the Smartphone apps linked to the toothbrush allowing parents caretakers and individuals to monitor brushing habits and improve oral health.
Most app-based products available in the market allow sensors to guide proper brushing and perfect brushing techniques; starting at the gum line and moving from one surface to another is followed. Additionally, areas other than teeth are also focused on including tongue and between teeth.
The effectiveness of these brushes in many cases is better than manually observations, where human error may play a role and lack of standardization produces a difference in results over time.
Why invest in a $300 brush?
Smart toothbrushes, in-spite of their high costs are increasingly being recommended by dentists, especially in patients with the need. In the long run, although a hefty upfront cost, it can help save thousands of dollars in dental work. Patients that can really benefit from this technology include but are not limited to:
- Younger children learning to brush or not motivated to brush regularly.
- Young professionals or otherwise busy who have a harder time keeping track of their oral hygiene habits.
- Elderly individuals with difficulty perfecting their oral health habits especially those with decreasing gum health such as diabetics.
What is the best smart toothbrush in the market?
Manufacturers and personal preferences may vary for each patient and with many options available in the market, there is no set `best smart toothbrush`. However, a general criterion to follow is one with a long handle that affirms the grip, small head to reach into the smaller areas in and around the teeth and bristles if varying length to reach into the crevices and clean the surface at the same time. Some worth mentioning toothbrush models that are most commonly being prescribed today by dentists and highly rated by users are mentioned below:
ORAL-B PRO Smart series
The latest toothbrush by Oral-B a company known to be number 1 recommendation of dentists worldwide has launched this as the latest model of their Smartseries Oral-B 5000, Oral-B 6000 and Oral-B 7000. It is a rechargeable electric brush with smart technology that synchronizes with Bluetooth with the Oral-B app.
- Motivation with simultaneous features to listen to news, music playlist and daily morning updates during the brushing duration of 2 minutes.
- Three-dimensional cleaning with oscillatory, rotatory and pulsation to break up and remove plaque better than a regular brush.
- Five different functions including whitening, daily clean, gum care, sensitive teeth and deep clean based on the need.
- Pressure alert indicator light that turns red every time pressure is too much or too little.
- Record of each tooth and area of the mouth covered each time and stored in-app for up to 6 months for sharing with a dental health professional or caretaker.
- The in-app features can also be modified by your dentist, based on your need to ensure areas needing more care are covered allowing focused attention tailored to your need.
Sonicare Diamond series
The Diamondseries by Sonicare is a line of smart toothbrushes that come in three models Diamondseries 9300, Diamondseries 9500 & Diamondseries 9700 based on their special function. They offer a good alternative to patients that do not prefer the rounded brush-head technology by Oral-B Pro Smart series. With almost all the same feature, this smart toothbrush offers a rechargeable electric battery and smart technology sync-able with Sonicare`s own app by Philips.
It is the deepest cleaning brush head of all with up to 10 times better plaque removal. The brush heads contouring shape allows better contact with the tooth`s natural shape and reaches into the crevices.
- Separate tongue cleaning brush to aid cleaning of the soft porous tongue surface.
- Controlled brushing is possible with the sensors present in the brush to reduce and unneeded scrubbing movements produced.
- Similar to Oral-B smart toothbrush, this comes with three intensities and 5 functions including cleaning, whitening, deep cleaning, gum health, and tongue care.
- Brush-heads carry a microchip allowing them to automatically pair with its every respective mode, based on which head is installed.
- Creates a 3D imagine inside the app to store which areas are brushed and how sufficiently.
How often do I need to replace a smart toothbrush head?
Most smart toothbrushes available in the market today come with an internal indicator that prompts for replacement when needed. Check with the manufacturer if the toothbrush you are looking to choose has this option. Most brush-heads come with a standard life of 3 months which may vary depending upon the type of use.
What about toothpaste?
The standard toothpaste, which is a pea-size amount of any name-brand you are accustomed to is recommended. However, some models that have special features come in the form of kits with special toothpaste that amplifies the effect of the toothbrush when used in combination with the toothpaste example the whitening systems are effective only when the brush-head is combined with the whitening toothpaste.
What about mouthwash and flossing?
Although some smart toothbrushes come in the form of kits combined with the recommended toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss, if you have purchased the brush separately, it does not mean the need does not exist. The function of a toothbrush is to clean the tooth and gum surfaces while flossing helps maintain hygiene between teeth and mouthwash cleanses areas otherwise inaccessible to a toothbrush such as the folds in your gums and cheeks. Since these are equally vital in maintaining oral hygiene, it is important to continue using these products apart from your new smart toothbrush.