Our choices explained
There are many great electric toothbrushes available today. The vast majority are suitable options for brace wearers.
But we have narrowed down the options to the choices you see listed above, and will now explain why we have chosen them.
Reading: Best electric toothbrush for braces
Our top pick, the Smart 1500 from Oral-B strikes the balance between features and cost. Plus, as it is manufactured by a leading brand, it is backed by clinical evidence. It is recommended by dental professionals worldwide. For us, the Smart 1500 is the best Oral-B toothbrush for braces.
The small round brush head is easy to move around the mouth and get in and around the metal brackets and wires. Oral-B’s specialist ‘ortho’ brush head is compatible with it too, although the more standard CrossAction or Sensi UltraThin heads also work fine.
The rubber grip around the power button and the textured surface on the back of the hand means it is fairly grippy in hand. It doesn’t feel quite as secure in hand as some other Oral-B models that have a rubber grip running down the front of the handle. The benefit though is that the Smart 1500 is easier to keep clean.
The built-in timer and pacer encourage you to brush for the right amount of time, evenly across the mouth.
The pressure sensor (which wraps a full 360 degrees around the handle) alerts you if you are brushing too hard, which is a cause of gum recession.
Whilst a travel case is by no means an essential accessory, it is nice to have.
Having worn braces ourselves we know what it is like. There are going to be times when you need to brush your teeth in unfamiliar locations. For example, days out with friends and family. You will end up brushing your teeth in the bathroom of a theme park, museum or restaurant.
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Many people find themselves having to brush at school, college, university or at work.
You need to take your toothbrush with you to do this. A travel case is very useful to keep your brush protected in transport. It can also prevent accidental activation. Some cases even have enough space inside to store interdental brushes.
Unfortunately, our top pick, the Smart 1500 doesn’t come with one. You might want to buy one separately.
The best Sonicare toothbrush for braces, the 4100 Series doesn’t come with a case either. Nonetheless, it has all the essential features of an electric toothbrush and is comparable to the Smart 1500.
We get lots of people asking for the best brush irrespective of price. The Sonicare 9900 Prestige is our choice here. It is expensive because of the smart technology it has.
The idea of its smart features is to help encourage better and more regular brushing habits. It comes at a price, though. We don’t recommend smart toothbrushes as our top pick because they come with more features than the average user needs.
Sensors in the brush handle track and record the position and motion of the toothbrush. The accompanying app then provides coverage maps for brushing, scrubbing and pressure.
This data is displayed as informative visuals within the app. They have bold colors and the charts are well thought out. It allows you to easily identify and learn what needs improving.
But it can be a bit overwhelming. Our enthusiasm for checking the app waned after a few days of use. To make the most of the smart features you need to take your smartphone into the bathroom each time you brush, which isn’t for everyone.
The Prestige has been somewhat simplified compared to most other smart brushes, though. It does not feel as complicated to use. The graphics and menus are less confusing and you get more meaningful and actionable information more quickly than some other brushes and apps.
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If you are brushing your teeth more frequently as a result of wearing a brace, the brush head will wear down and need replacing quicker. The 9900 alerts you via the handle when it is time to replace the brush head. This is a neat feature, but not essential. It’s simple enough to judge for yourself when a brush head needs replacing.
The travel case that comes with the 9900 is slim and stylish. You can even charge the toothbrush inside it, via the USB Type-C connector. Again, these are nice features but far from essential.
Oral-B’s equivalent to the 9900 is the iO. It offers similar features and achieves a similar end result.
If your preference is Oral-B, the iO is the most feature rich model they offer. It isn’t as refined as the 9900, but it offers some unique elements. These include a color display and sensor that confirms when you are using the correct pressure. We compare them to one another in our Oral-B iO vs Sonicare Prestige 9900 comparison.
There is little difference between them, but the Prestige just edges the Oral-B iO in our opinion.
Our final option is the Oral-B Pro 500.
It is a more basic brush than the Smart 1500, but it will still do a good job if used correctly.
Parents, if you are looking for a brush for your teenager, that they can afford to lose, then this is it. Not that we encourage losing toothbrushes, but it easily happens.
The 500 looks and feels more basic. It only has Oral-B’s 2D cleaning action, as opposed to the 3D cleaning action included with the Smart 1500. This means that it doesn’t use pulsations as a way of removing extra plaque.
Another compromise compared to the 1500 is that it doesn’t have a pressure sensor built in. It’s therefore important to make sure you are not pressing too hard when using the brush, as this can damage your teeth.
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