Manual Vs Electric Toothbrush – Which is Best?

Manual Vs Electric Toothbrush – Which is Best?

Whilst the importance of brushing twice daily is well understood, people often find themselves wondering whether a manual toothbrush or electric toothbrush will provide a superior clean. Both are effective at removing plaque and helping to maintain optimal oral hygiene, but there are a few reasons why electric toothbrushes may be a better choice for some people.


Who Should Consider an Electric Toothbrush?

Dentists use and are happy to recommend manual toothbrushes to all patients, however some individuals can benefit from using an electric toothbrush. When used with the appropriate technique (motion, pressure) and skill to ensure adequate coverage of hard to reach areas, a manual toothbrush is very effective at cleaning the teeth.

An electric toothbrush can be beneficial for patients with dexterity challenges and those who seek a faster clean. This is because the oscillating head can cover a larger area, making the brushing process much easier and more efficient. Some studies have shown that compared to manual toothbrushes, electric toothbrushes can reduce plaque by up to 21 percent, and gingivitis by 11 percent. Those who are prone to brushing too hard with a manual toothbrush can also damage the enamel on their teeth, and this is less likely with an electric toothbrush.

Patients who experience the following may wish to consider investing in an electric toothbrush:

  • Excessive plaque build-up
  • Limited mobility
  • Children who have difficulty maintaining their oral hygiene routine


Manual Vs Electric Toothbrush – Cost Considerations

Manual toothbrushes are readily available at a wide variety of shops, and they can be purchased for only a few dollars. Dentists recommend that toothbrushes are replaced every 3 months.

Electric toothbrushes vary in price, starting from around $20 and increasing up to around $300. At the upper end of the scale you are likely to gain more features, such as variable brush head speeds, longer warranties, timers, travel cases and more. You should be aware that the brush heads will still need to be replaced every 3 months, and you can typically purchase a 6 pack of brush heads for between $10-$30.



Many people prefer the convenience of manual toothbrushes due to their availability, low cost, low weight and ease of use. Electric toothbrushes require frequent charging and are heavier to transport. However, they do offer additional features such as pressure sensors, variable speeds and brush timers which some people may appreciate.


Making a Decision

Deciding between using a manual or electric toothbrush will ultimately come down to personal preference and experience. Provided you use the correct brushing technique, a manual toothbrush can provide an effective clean and help protect your teeth against gum disease. However, those with dexterity challenges, children and those seeking an easier brushing experience may wish to consider investing in an electric toothbrush. An electric toothbrush can offer additional benefits such as more effective removal of plaque, a pressure sensor to prevent aggressive brushing, better grip for those with dexterity troubles and additional features such as brush timers and smartphone apps to track your oral hygiene routine.


Book an Appointment at Sydney Park Dental Today

If it has been a while since your last check-up, or if you would like some advice on which type of toothbrush would best suit your needs, please book an appointment at Sydney Park Dental by calling 02 8084 7170 today. We are your local Erskineville dentist, and we look forward to seeing you soon.