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LOGO BOTTOM Ian Bell Dentist Family cosmetic Bellevue WA
(425) 883-8333
15613 Bel-Red Rd., Ste. A, Bellevue, WA 98008
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Do You Still Brush in Circles with an Electric Toothbrush?


Posted on 3/10/2017 by Janie Bell
A close up of an electronic toothbrush.
The answer to this question varies greatly, as there are so many types of electric toothbrushes on the market.

If you have a toothbrush that rotates in circles on its own, then brushing in circles may not do as much good.

However, if your toothbrush moves up and down, or side to side, then still moving the toothbrush in small circles can help you get the most debris off of your teeth.

Why Your Teeth Get Cleaner When You Use Circular Motions

Brushing your teeth up and down simply takes the debris, including the plaque, that is on your teeth, and pushes it around.

It pushes some into your gum tissue, and slides some off of your teeth. The same goes if you are only brushing side to side, except the debris is being pushed into the gaps between your teeth. Neither of these are healthy, especially if you aren’t doing the best job flossing. The answer to this question varies greatly, as there are so many types of electric toothbrushes on the market. If you have a toothbrush that rotates in circles on its own, then brushing in circles may not do as much good.

However, if your toothbrush moves up and down, or side to side, then still moving the toothbrush in small circles can help you get the most debris off of your teeth.

Why Your Teeth Get Cleaner When You Use Circular Motions

Brushing your teeth up and down simply takes the debris, including the plaque, that is on your teeth, and pushes it around.

It pushes some into your gum tissue, and slides some off of your teeth. The same goes if you are only brushing side to side, except the debris is being pushed into the gaps between your teeth. Neither of these are healthy, especially if you aren't doing the best job flossing.

When you use a circular motion, you are loosening the debris and moving it around in different directions, which more effectively removes it from your teeth since it isn't just getting pushed into a single spot.

Plaque is sticky, so if you push it all into a single spot, you are going to end up with a pile. Instead, using little circles allows it to be moved to different spots, giving it less to hold on to, making it more likely to fall off.

Using an electric toothbrush can be a great option for many people. However, using it properly is the key to optimal oral health. If you aren't sure if your brushing technique is up to par, then contact our office about it. Let your dentist tell you if you are doing enough, or if there are spots you need to work on a bit more.
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D. Ian Bell, D.D.S.
Advanced Aesthetic, Restorative & Implant Dentistry
Bellevue-Redmond Professional Center

15613 Bel-Red Rd, Suite A
Bellevue, WA 98008-2348
(425) 883-8333
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