Consumer Reports: Top electric toothbrushes

Consumer Reports

CONSUMER REPORTS — Dentists agree that brushing your teeth for two minutes, twice a day is the best thing you can do to keep your teeth healthy. And some studies suggest that an electric toothbrush may help keep your teeth cleaner.

Consumer Reports just tested some and tells us which models did the best.

An electric toothbrush can cost well over $100. How do you choose the right one? CR enlisted some volunteers to test a batch of powered toothbrushes.

The volunteers were instructed to skip brushing their teeth or using any other dental products for eight hours. Then, a dental hygienist checked their teeth for plaque levels.

Afterward, each volunteer was given an electric toothbrush. They were instructed to brush for two minutes, and the hygienist measured their plaque levels again.

CR’s cleaning performance score is based on the before-and-after differences. The electric toothbrushes were also tested for battery performance, ease of use and noise.

The electric toothbrush at the top of CR’s ratings is the Oral-B, which got the top score for ease of use.

A cheaper option that also did well is the Philips Sonicare.

Whether you’re using a top-of-the-line powered toothbrush or a manual one, experts said the way you brush your teeth is important. Here are a few tips:

  • Angle your toothbrush at 45 degrees to reach the space between your teeth and gums
  • Focus on two teeth at a time and work your way around your mouth
  • Don’t brush too hard because that could do more harm than good

CR said another thing to consider is how much waste plastic manual toothbrushes create. By using an electric model, you only have to replace the brush head, so you’re tossing out a little less plastic.

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