Can Sound Really Help Clean Teeth?

Can Sound Really Help Clean Teeth?Electric toothbrushes have been around for well over half a century at this point, and while they were the newest toothbrush technology around for a long time that’s just not true anymore. The newest designs are sonic and ultrasonic brushes, which take the tech of an electric brush and move it one step forward.

  • Regular toothbrushes have been around for centuries or even longer. Newer models offer interesting shapes, different brush shapes, and bent handles that all make brushing easier, but in the end they’re all still a set of stiff bristles on the end of a stick.
  • Electric toothbrushes still have the bristles, but they add a motor to get them moving, either side-to-side or rotating. The advantage to using one is that the electric motor puts in the effort so you don’t have to, and all you have to do is slowly move the brush across all your teeth. Most models also have a two-minute timer so you’ll know when you’ve done enough brushing.
  • Sonic toothbrushes start with an electric brush but crank up the movement frequency so high that the brush vibrates. They get the name “sonic” because the frequency is in the same range as sounds. Some brushes are ultrasonic, which mean they vibrate hundreds of thousands of times per minute instead of tens of thousands.

The advantage of spending a little more for a sonic brush is that the vibrations let the bristles reach further into the cracks and crevices of your teeth, cleaning them better than if you had only used a regular or electric brush. But there’s still something that reaches into those cracks even better, and it’s called floss. No matter what you might hear, no sonic brush can completely replace floss. But if you don’t floss (and you should), your teeth will get cleaner with a sonic toothbrush.

Of course, no brush can replace a visit to the dentist, either. No matter how fast they vibrate, plastic bristles can’t scrape off tartar. To get that off, you need a metal pick, and the only people you can trust to use a metal pick in your mouth safely are dentists and dental hygienists.

So feel free to use any toothbrush that seems like a good fit, whether it’s a traditional brush, an electric model, or a sonic or ultrasonic brush. Just remember that in the end, it’s still just a toothbrush and no substitute for good flossing technique and regular visits to your dentist.