Do Hard Bristles on a Toothbrush Hurt Your Teeth?
Posted on 10/19/2020 by Brandon Cooley
Do Hard Bristles on a Toothbrush Hurt Your Teeth?When you buy a toothbrush, you can choose between hard, medium, soft, and extra soft bristles. Which bristles should you choose to care for your teeth in the best possible way?

Why You May Be Tempted To Use Hard Bristles

If you are a smoker, or you have stained teeth, you may be tempted to buy the hard bristle toothbrush as this will have more impact removing those brown stains, especially if combined with whitening toothpaste. However, the purpose of brushing your teeth is simply to remove food debris. Anything else, such as stain removal, can and should be achieved in other ways.

Hard Bristles Are Bad For Your Teeth and Gums

It is important to be aware of the long-lasting damage that can be caused to your teeth and gums when trying to obtain that extra whiteness by using a hard toothbrush. The protective enamel covering of your teeth can be worn away by the scouring of hard bristles, leaving your teeth vulnerable to decay. This is especially the case if you brush your teeth within 30 minutes of eating a meal. When eating, as part of the digestive process, your saliva becomes more acidic. The extra acidity temporarily softens the enamel of your teeth making it particularly vulnerable to the extra scouring of hard bristles. In addition, the hard bristles cause extra wear and tear on your gums causing the gums to recede away from your teeth which can be unsightly. Unfortunately, once your gums have receded, they won't grow back again.

Our recommendation is that you use soft or extra soft bristles and that you change your toothbrush when the bristles lose their shape or after three or four months, whichever comes first. Everyone wants gleaming white teeth, but there are other ways to get these without having to damage your tooth enamel and gums by using a hard toothbrush. To find out more, contact our office.
As a patient, three things stand out to me about Cooley Smiles - the great quality dental work, the cleanliness of the facility and thorough follow up. These are major differentiators that I look for in dental providers and to-date, I've always been satisfied with my experience. Thanks for the great patient care, Cooley Smiles team!

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