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Why You Should Switch to a Soft Toothbrush?

Teeth are extremely important for us. They help us smile, talk, and most importantly chew food to make digestion easier. This makes it important for all of us to take care of our teeth and practice good oral hygiene. Toothbrushes that we use to brush our teeth thus form an important aspect of overall dental hygiene. As there are numerous brands available in the market it becomes a task to select the right toothbrush for you. [1]

There are basically two types of toothbrushes one with a soft bristle and one with a hard bristle. Both types of toothbrushes have their own advantages and disadvantages. People always believe that hard toothbrushes clean the teeth more than the softer variant but this is not the case. In actuality, hard toothbrushes damage the teeth more. [1]

Dentists recommended to not scrub the teeth hard while brushing as the toothpaste is already quite abrasive and scrubbing the teeth hard over-brushes the teeth and damages the gums. This article gives a detailed review of why should you switch to a soft toothbrush. [1]

Why You Should Switch to a Soft Toothbrush?

Why You Should Switch to a Soft Toothbrush?

Some of the positive aspects of switching to a soft toothbrush are-

Enamel Protection- Hard toothbrushes may be good for clearing out plaque or stains from the teeth but they are not good for the enamel of the teeth. The enamel of the tooth is the hard white part which acts as a cover for the softer inner parts of the teeth. [1]

The function of the enamel is to protect the teeth from any foreign invaders like bacteria and fungi which infiltrate the mouth by eating contaminated food. By using a hard toothbrush the enamel of the teeth wear down thus exposing the teeth to various infections which is not good for overall oral hygiene.

Some of the symptoms that you may experience when the enamel wears down are tooth sensitivity and yellowing of the tooth. Thus it is good to use a soft toothbrush to protect the enamel and prevent any harmful bacteria to infect the tooth.

Gum Protection- The gums of the tooth also get affected by using a hard toothbrush. Consistently using hard toothbrushes cause receding of the gums thus exposing the surface of the root. When this happens there is increased tooth sensitivity and the likelihood of developing cavities also increases. [1]

As the gum recession increases and worsens the chances of you losing the tooth also significantly increases. Thus switching to a softer toothbrush can do a lot of good in not only preventing the gums but also protect the teeth.

Soft Toothbrushes Cleans More- Another reason why you should switch to a softer toothbrush is they clean the teeth as well as toothbrushes with hard bristles. In case if there is a plaque that is not able to be removed by a soft toothbrush then the chances of it being removed by a harder toothbrush is also quite less according to Oral-B, a leading manufacturer of toothbrushes around the world. This would eventually require the help of a dentist who will do a thorough cleaning to get rid of the plaque. [1]

In almost all the cases where people go for a harder toothbrush is because they feel that soft toothbrushes do not clean as well; however this has to do more with the brushing technique rather than the type of the toothbrush used. [1]

How you use your toothbrush is more important than what toothbrush you are using. For best results you need to place the tooth brush at an angle towards the gums and rotate the brush in a circular fashion gently to remove any particles or plaque. It is not necessary to put immense pressure on the teeth to remove the debris. Thus a soft toothbrush is good enough to clean the teeth and gums when used correctly. [1]

Despite this being said, it has been estimated that more than half of the population of the United States still use hard toothbrushes despite dentists’ recommendations for using a softer one. Lack of awareness is believed to be the primary cause for it.

It has also been noted that soft toothbrushes tend to wear away faster than the hard ones. It is correct to a degree but in any case dentists recommend a change of toothbrush every three months irrespective of whether it needs a change or not so this should not be a factor when selecting a hard or a soft toothbrush. [1]

Of note, the longer a toothbrush is used the more are the chances of bacteria being accumulated, which is detrimental not only for the teeth but overall oral hygiene.

Additionally, the older the toothbrush the harder it gets to get to every corner of the mouth to clean all the teeth as the bristles of an old toothbrush spread out. [1]

In conclusion, people who are used to using hard toothbrushes find it tough to switch to a softer one. However, given some time, they should be able to adjust to it and protect their teeth and at the same time clean them as effectively as a hard toothbrush.

In case if a toothbrush has damaged the teeth in some way then it is advised to go to a dentist to get a softer toothbrush and use the correct technique to prevent further damage. Thus you should be better off using a softer toothbrush than a harder one to keep the teeth clean and healthy. [1]


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24993269?_ga=2.154287736.1351528273.1544419540-315444477.1538130913
Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Sheetal DeCaria, M.D. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 24, 2019

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