Level up your soft brushing skills with these moves. 

Many of us partake in the 2-2 rule of brushing our teeth without much overthinking. Two minutes, twice per day. We draw swift and steady circles across every tooth with ease—Mr. Miyagi would be proud. Yet there's one lesson from our beloved TV karate master we should always remember: harder, does not mean more effective. Let’s flow on this thought for a moment!Mr. Miyagi teaches Daniel how to wax on, wax off in The Karate KidTough love doesn't work
Aggressive tooth brushing can do more harm than good for teeth and gums. Hard bristled toothbrushes make it way, way worse. Over time this can cause teeth abrasion or recessive gums, which might require dental procedures such as fillings or root canals to fix the pain. So don’t give your teeth a hard time, they’re sensitive—or rather they’ll become sensitive with all that mechanical wear and tear.  

Slow it down
Stress, anxiety, and hurrying to start or end our day can also cause us to brush with all that extra muscle. Another piece of sage advice is to take deep breaths and to give yourself two zen-like minutes each time while brushing. 
Daniel painting the fence in The Karate Kid movieThe right brush for the job
Soft bristles and a gentle hand is universally beneficial for teeth—teeth experts say. They’re just as good at removing plaque, without causing damage. If you use an electric toothbrush, one key trick is to hold it with just three fingers instead of a full grip to ease the pressure.   

Ditch the tough brush
Hard toothbrushes take more work to maneuver. If you think you might have one, try running the pad of your finger across the top. If it feels pokey or sharp at the tips or if they don't bend easily with your finger, chances are you’ve got a tough brush and it’s time to part ways.

Refresh regularly 
Replace your toothbrush every 2 months—and definitely before the bristles start to lose its shape. This way, you're guaranteed the best brush session every time.

Now that you’ve learned the techniques to become a master toothbrusher, let’s talk tools. Check out our manual toothbrush recommendations that can take you to the soft side.


Images: The Karate Kid (1984)