Many people choose to use a hard-bristled toothbrush because they think it will clean their teeth better. They think that the ability to “scrub” their teeth will result in a better cleaning. Dr. Grabiak disagrees; hard-bristled toothbrushes may actually damage the teeth and, more importantly, the gums.

When you brush daily with a hard-bristled brush, you can damage the enamel on the teeth, and you can also cause the gums to be pushed back away from their natural position. Over time, this can lead to increased tooth sensitivity, as areas of the teeth that were not designed to be exposed are exposed.

On the other hand, a soft bristled brush will gently massage the teeth and gums. They are effective at removing debris, but without the damaging effects of the stiffer bristles. They conform better to the surface of the teeth and gums, so they do not scrape them, but gently remove foreign objects, including food and plaque.

Also, if you suffer from sensitive teeth, you will struggle with stiff brushes. They will cause you additional sensitivity issues, and this can be completely avoided with a soft toothbrush.

Remember, you should be brushing your teeth at least twice a day, if not after every single meal. That is simply too many times to warrant the use of a stiff toothbrush. Instead, opt for one that is soft to gently clean your teeth without damaging your gums. You can make your toothbrush even softer by running it under warm water before you brush.