5 Best Electric Toothbrushes for Receding Gums – Reviews and Buying Guide

Receding gums can be a major dental health issue. In addition to causing sensitivity to hot and cold, this can eventually lead to plaque buildup and gingivitis. If you suffer from receding gums, purchasing and using an electric toothbrush is an important change you can make to help out your mouth. While electric toothbrushes cannot prevent or treat receding gums on their own, they can make a significant difference in slowing the progression of the problem.

To make it easier for you to find the best electric toothbrush for receding gums, we researched and reviewed many of the recommended electric toothbrushes on the market. We looked specifically for toothbrushes with features that are essential to people with sensitive teeth as a result of receding gums, such as a moderate cleaning mode and pressure sensors. We also looked for other features, like built-in brush timers, that set the best electric toothbrushes apart from the pack. At the end of all this research, we came up with five of the best electric toothbrushes on the market for people with receding gums.

Top 5 Electric Toothbrushes for Receding Gums Review 2018

Our five picks are presented in the table below for a quick view at their overall ratings and what sets them apart. Below that, we offer detailed reviews about each electric toothbrush. Our buying guide goes into more detail about the benefits of an electric toothbrush for receding gums and what features to look for in an electric toothbrush. Finally, we highlight our overall favorite electric toothbrush on the market today.

Name and Features Image Rating Details
1. Oral-B Pro 7000 SmartSeries (Best All-Around Electric Toothbrush for Receding Gums)
Features 3D cleaning CrossAction brush head; 6 cleaning modes; pressure sensor; Bluetooth compatible for tracking brushing habits; Oral-B series are the only power toothbrushes to receive the ADA Seal of Acceptance
OralB
2. Brio SmartClean (Runner-up)
Includes SmartClean optimized brush heads with 3 cleaning modes; features a timer and a battery lasting 6 weeks per charge
Brio
3. Philips Sonicare FlexCare Whitening Edition (Best Sanitized Brush Head)
2 brushes in 1 pack; 3 brush modes and 2 cleaning routines; UV sanitizer cleaning the brush head; battery lasts up to 3 weeks
PhilipsSonycare
4. Waterpik SR-3000 Sensonic (Budget Pick)
Inexpensive for the features; battery lasts 1–2 weeks; features advanced brush head and timer
Waterpik
5. FOREO Issa 2 (Best for Battery Life)
Fully waterproof 16-speed toothbrush with ultra-soft hygienic bristles and a battery running up to 1 year after 1-hour charge
Foreo
Features
  • Cross Action round brush head
  • Up to 800 brush movements per second
  • 3D cleaning
  • 6 modes: Daily Clean, Gum Care, Sensitive, Whitening, Deep Clean, and Tongue Cleaner
  • Pressure sensor
  • Battery runs for 10 days
  • Bluetooth compatible to get real-time Oral-B app feedback
  • Limited 2-year warranty

OVERALL RATING: 10 out of 10

If you believe in using health data to make your everyday routine better, the SmartSeries electric toothbrush from Oral-B is the model for you. The toothbrush is Bluetooth compatible so that you can get real-time feedback about your brushing and track your brushing habits over time in the Oral-B app on your phone.

The brush features Oral-B’s cross action brushing head with 3D cleaning, which is better than traditional brush heads at cleaning plaque off teeth while still feeling gentle on sensitive areas. At 48,000 oscillations per minute, this brush head packs a ton of power to keep plaque at bay and remove staining.

It is also designed with six different cleaning modes for whatever you need to focus on in your mouth. Of particular interest are the gum care and sensitive modes, both of which slow down the brush head to deliver cleaning while feeling light against receding gums and sensitive areas. The brush also has a pressure sensor to warn you when you are pressing down against your teeth, which can be a huge help for preventing gum recession. The timer is both built into the toothbrush itself as well as shown on a digital display attached to the charging base so you can see how much time is left.

Thanks to all this built-in power, the battery only lasts 10 days rather than several weeks. In addition, because of the low-wattage charger included, the toothbrush can take up to 20 hours to fully recharge from empty.

PROS:
  • Bluetooth connectivity for tracking brushing habits
  • Six different cleaning modes
  • Cross action brush head with 3D cleaning
  • Pressure sensor

CONS:
  • Battery lasts 10 days and requires up to 20 hours to recharge

Features
  • SmartClean optimized bristles
  • 31,000 brush oscillations per minute
  • 3 modes: normal, soft and massage
  • 2-minute timer
  • Battery runs up to 6 weeks
  • Includes 2 brush heads
  • 2-year warranty

OVERALL RATING: 9.5 out of 10

This electric toothbrush from Brio is simple and inexpensive, making it perfect for those who want the benefits of an electric toothbrush for receding gums without all the bells and whistles.

The brush is relatively fast at a maximum speed of 31,000 oscillations per minute, which allows it to be very effective at cleaning plaque in non-sensitive areas. For sensitive teeth, it features a soft cleaning mode, and you can also use it to massage your gums thanks to the massage cleaning mode. The modes are easily controlled by a central button, making it easy to switch during a single brushing.

The toothbrush includes a two-minute timer with a sound reminder every 30 seconds to switch quadrants within your mouth for a full clean. While there are no specialty brush heads included, the brush does come with a second head as a backup or for shared use and Brio offers a brush head subscription program so you’ll never run out of fresh heads for the best cleaning power.

Another great feature of this toothbrush for those who like to keep it simple is the battery – it lasts six weeks on a single charge, so you don’t have to think about it often and it is not a concern for travel. If you do decide to take the charging base with you, it is very compact and easy to pack away.

PROS:
  • Multiple cleaning modes, including gum massage
  • Two-minute timer with 30-second intervals
  • Battery lasts six weeks per charge

CONS:
  • No accessory brush heads

Features
  • Strokes per minute: 62,000
  • 3 modes: clean, white, massage
  • 2 cleaning routines: GoCare (1 min.) and MaxCare (3 min.)
  • 2-min brushing timer with 30-sec intervals
  • Battery runs for 3 weeks
  • UV sanitizer included in a charging base

OVERALL RATING: 9.5 out of 10

If you need two electric toothbrushes – for example, if you’re outfitting the whole family with electric toothbrushes, or buying one for yourself and one as a gift – this two-pack from Philips is hard to beat on price and quality.

The toothbrush operates at an extremely high frequency of 62,000 strokes per minute for serious plaque cleaning. The different cleaning modes are also useful for developing a cleaning routine that is also gently on your teeth – you can switch between the normal mode, a whitening mode optimized for removing stains on your teeth, and massage mode for a gently massage on your gums.

The toothbrush comes with a built-in timer, normally set to two minutes with 30-second interval sounds to let you know to switch between quadrants of your mouth. The brush can also switch between two cleaning routines: the one-minute routine is perfect for a quick mid-day brushing to clean out your mouth, while the three-minute routine is good when you need an extended cleaning.

The battery is designed to last for three weeks, which is great for travel, since you can get away without bringing a charger on most trips. But, you might miss the charging station, since it comes with a UV sanitizer that cleans the brush head when you’re done using the toothbrush.

PROS:
  • High frequency with three different brush modes
  • Multiple routines for quick or extended cleaning
  • UV sanitizer on base
  • Battery lasts up to three weeks

CONS:
  • Base is large when you need to travel with it

Features
  • Advanced brush head design with extra-soft bristles
  • Strokes per minute: 30,500
  • 2-min brushing timer with 30-sec intervals
  • Recharge indicator
  • Battery runs for 1 week; needs min. 1h to recharge
  • Limited 2-year warranty

OVERALL RATING: 9.0 out of 10

If you are looking to make the switch to an electric toothbrush, but don’t want to invest hundreds of dollars in your first electric model, this toothbrush from Waterpik offers most of the features of top-end models at a budget price.

At 30,500 oscillations per minute, the toothbrush may not boast the same speed as other electric toothbrushes – but this speed is more than enough to clear plaque and won’t leave your teeth aching as you’re brushing around receding gums. In addition, the toothbrush can switch to a slower speed for sensitive areas. The brush also has a built-in two-minute timer and makes a sound at 30-second intervals to let you know to switch areas of your mouth.

The brush comes with three different heads, although in all likelihood you will primarily use the standard head. The other two are variations on size to get at more precise areas and in between teeth, but opting for floss is more effective at cleaning these spots. The brush heads are inexpensive, so it is possible to buy several either as replacements or for sharing the electric base with a partner.

The battery runs for between one and two weeks and recharges quickly when needed. The indicator on the front of the toothbrush lets you know when the battery level is low. The biggest fault of this toothbrush, though, is that the battery is not replaceable without getting an entirely new toothbrush. Users found that the battery lasts between two and three years, just beyond the warranty period.

For cleaning particularly hard-to-reach or tough areas of your mouth, consider pairing this toothbrush with a water flosser in a packaged kit. Together, this toothbrush and the water flosser will keep your mouth clean and your gums feeling relaxed and healthy.

PROS:
  • Built-in timer with 30-second interval sound
  • Rechargeable battery lasts up to two weeks
  • Inexpensive to replace brush heads

CONS:
  • Battery is not replaceable and dies after 2-3 years

Features
  • 2X the sonic power
  • Ultra-soft hygienic bristles (premium silicone + PBT polymer)
  • 11,000 high-intensity pulsations per minute
  • 16 adjustable speeds
  • Battery runs for 365 days after 1-hour charge
  • Waterproof
  • 1-year warranty

OVERALL RATING: 8.5 out of 10

This electric toothbrush from Foreo is designed to be unique among toothbrushes, but the innovation comes with an expensive price tag.

First, this brush simply looks different from most other toothbrushes – electric or manual – on the market. The reason is that it is made primarily from silicone, which makes it both ergonomic to hold as well as fully waterproof for use in the shower.

Second, the battery is extremely unusual, in a great way. It is charged by USB for one hour, then offers enough juice to run the toothbrush for 365 days without recharging. This feature is a big deal if you travel and want an electric toothbrush along, since it means it can be charged anywhere and, more likely, won’t need to be charged during a trip of any length.

The toothbrush also features 16 adjustable speeds, allowing you to dial in the speed that feels most comfortable for your sensitive teeth and to adjust between sensitive areas and non-sensitive areas that you want to clean more deeply.

However, given the high price tag of this toothbrush – it is the most expensive in our roundup – there are a few features missing. It does not have a timer, which is essential for adequate brushing, since most people are in the habit of brushing their teeth for less than one minute. It also does not come with multiple brush heads for precision cleaning in between teeth.

PROS:
  • Battery lasts for a full year on a one-hour USB charge
  • Fully waterproof
  • 16-speed adjustability

CONS:
  • Expensive
  • No built-in timer
  • No accessory brush heads

Buying Guide

Although no electric toothbrush can cure receding gums, the right one can prevent further decline and help get rid of plaque. This section will guide you through some of the key features.

Using an electric toothbrush for receding gums

The girl is brushing her teeth

Why use an electric toothbrush rather than a traditional manual brush to help deal with receding gums? The main reason is that electric toothbrushes encourage you to apply less pressure when brushing than you might with a manual brush – and pressure is a major cause of receding gums. The motion of electric toothbrushes allows you to hold it against your teeth without applying force, and the best electric toothbrushes have a built-in pressure sensor to warn you when you could be doing damage to your gums. In addition, electric toothbrushes can limit your brushing to two minutes if they have a built-in timer, so that you don’t overbrush and cause gum damage, or don’t underbrush, which can lead to plaque formation and worsen the gums situation. Although these might seem like subtle benefits, they can make a huge difference in whether your gums feel okay during brushing or as if they are under attack.

Cleaning modes

Some electric toothbrushes come with different cleaning modes for different purposes – for example, teeth whitening, deep cleaning, or gum massaging. These different modes can change the rate of vibrations and oscillations of the brush head, and a low-frequency cleaning mode may feel better against sensitive teeth and gums.

However, dentists have found that cleaning modes will not impact your dental health overall as long as you are using your toothbrush properly and regularly.

Pressure sensors

Having a pressure sensor on your electric toothbrush can make a huge difference if you have receding gums, since pressure is one of the main causes of gum recession. A pressure sensor will warn you if you begin applying force against your teeth rather than simply holding the brush head up to your teeth and letting it spin.

Different brush heads

Brush heads of Oral B electric toothbrushes

Some electric toothbrushes come with multiple, different brush heads optimized for different purposes, such as cleaning more precisely in the cavities of your teeth or cleaning the area between your teeth. If you feel these are places that you typically neglect in your brushing, having these brush heads available can make a big difference in your cleaning. However, for the most part, you may be better off with just the standard brush head, good brushing techniques, and floss or a water flosser for cleaning hard-to-reach places in between teeth.

Built-in timer

Look for a brush with a built-in timer that will limit your brushing to two minutes. This is important both for those who tend to overbrush – which can cause excess damage to your gums – and for those who tend to underbrush – leaving behind plaque to build up and cause problems. With a built-in timer, you don’t need to guess whether you’re brushing for an appropriate length of time.

Battery runtime and charging time

If you’re only planning on using your electric toothbrush at home and replacing it on the charging stand after each use, battery runtime will not be an important consideration. However, if you travel frequently, battery life can determine whether or not you’ll need to bring a charging stand with you, which can be bulky. Although charging time is typically less than the time between brushings, this is not true for all electric toothbrushes and is important to check when choosing a brush.

Waterproof capability

Electric toothbrush in water

You might think that all electric toothbrushes are waterproof, since they’re designed to be rinsed with water, but that is not necessarily the case.

In fact, most electric toothbrushes are only water resistant and will not do well if left in water for an extended period. If you typically brush your teeth in the shower, you will want to look for a toothbrush that is fully waterproof.

Conclusion

If you suffer from receding gums, switching to an electric toothbrush can make a significant difference in slowing the progression of the problem and even encouraging your gums to grow back. This is because electric toothbrushes encourage good brushing habits, including reducing the pressure on your gums, and often work more effectively at removing plaque than manual toothbrushes. Our guide highlights five of our favorite electric toothbrushes on the market today and covers everything you need to know to choose the best electric toothbrush for your needs.

10 Total Score
Oral-B Pro 7000 SmartSeries – Editor's Choice

Out of all the electric toothbrushes we reviewed, our overall favorite was the Pro 7000 SmartSeries toothbrush from Oral-B. Oral-B is already one of the most trusted names in dental hygiene, so it comes as no surprise that they put out a superior product with features perfect for healing receding gums. The 3D cleaning technology does an excellent job at attacking plaque without being tough on sensitive teeth. Plus, the toothbrush gives you the option to switch between six different cleaning modes, including modes for gum care and sensitive teeth, so that you can customize your cleaning to meet your needs at the moment. The pressure sensor is also a great tool for fighting back against gum recession. Finally, the built-in Bluetooth allows you to track your brushing habits over time, so you can see for yourself which habits are working for your gums and which are not.

Effect on Gums
10
Overall Performance
10
Extra Features
10
PROS
  • Bluetooth connectivity for tracking brushing habits
  • Six different cleaning modes
  • Cross action brush head with 3D cleaning
  • Pressure sensor
CONS
  • Battery lasts 10 days and requires up to 20 hours to recharge
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