I've only ever bought my electric toothbrushes from costco. they offer the sonicare flexcare and the oral b professional care 3000. So far i've owned three sets(costco sells them in pairs for $130ish) of the sonicares over a three year period. they break about once a year but thankfully costco has an awesome return policy and i've never had to pay for them, except the very first time. About a month ago i switched to the Oral B's and i have to say the Sonicares perform better. The vibrations on the sonicare are much faster and spaced closer together so it doesn't feel so jittery in your mouth. The oral B sometimes can make my vision feel shakey because the pulses aren't as close together. However the sonicares break all the time and the replacement heads are more expensive....i'd say go with how much you feel like spending, the set of oral b's from costco was $80. They both leave you teeth feeling ridiculously clean...
I've had a sonicare since Christmas 2007. After using it for about a year, my dental hygenist told me retirement must agree with me because my gums looked better than they ever had. I got the sonicare at the same time I retired, so I think it deserves the credit. I have never had a problem with it and have never replaced it (brush, yes, unit, no).
I used a Sonicare for about ten years as it was recommended by both my dentist and Consumer's Reports. Both my spouse and I bought two sonicares during that period of time. With the last ones we bought, we both noticed crud on the toothbrushes after they sat for a few hours. My cleaning technique eventually included removing the brush head (after brushing) rinsing everything and using a regular toothbrush to clean the conical screw cap that holds the brush head to the body. There was still crud that seemed to be toothpaste that oozed through the body of the toothbrush. I finally called sonicare and was told the brush was out of warranty. So I bought an Oral B about 6 months ago - one of the more expensive ones. I've had my teeth cleaned twice since switching and tooth cleaning lady/dentist tell me everything looks the same. To me, the sonicare felt like it was doing a better job but the professionals don't see any difference. Spouse is still using sonicare - wants to finish up the brush heads we had already bought then we will both be using Oral B. By the way, if you decide on sonicare get the smaller brushes heads. They really do provide easy access to areas of the mouth where the bigger heads resist. If it wasn't for the crud, I'd still be with sonicare. For what it's worth, spouse and I had different sonicare models.
I have tried both and prefer using the Sonicare. I think I'm currently using a Sonicare Elite 7800 (there's no model number oi it) which I've had for several years. I replace the heads but I've never had any problem with any units breaking. Well, except the one that I dropped on the floor, but in good conscience I couldn't blame that on a defective unit. It fell from about 6 feet onto a tile floor and hit just right. It did give me the opportunity to get a new one. I do like this current one and selected it because it had a smaller and better angled head. My check ups at the dentist are great and there doesn't seem to be too much cleaning that's needed.
I've had an Oral B one now for about 3 years and it's still going strong. My husband has a Sonic Care and BOTH acquire crud them. To the point where I wonder if there is a design flaw in all of them. I wish some Consumer Reports or organization would run lab tests on pathogens on them to encourage the manufactures to think up better designs.
I remove my toothbrush head immediately after EACH brushing, rinse out the brush rightside up and upside down with running water. Then I point the electronic holder portion of the toothbrush, rinse it off, then I point the holder downwards while keeping the brush spinning. You'll see how much water and toothpaste 'liquid' comes spitting of out there. It's the only way that I have been able to keep it clean to the point where neither piece have an odor. For what it's worth, I've tried various toothpastes & liquids, have always removed the brush head portion and rinsed off the holder portion, swap out my brush head every 4-6 weeks or sooner if it starts to smell, I DO NOT have a rotting, decayed mouth. I have a couple of small cavaties that will be addressed now that my surgery is over with but other than that, I don't have gum or tongue disease and I either floss every night if I don't use my water irrigator between my teeth.
My husband doesn't remove his toothbrush head each time and has to clean the gunk out often. Although mine is working fine, I'd love to find a gunk proof electronic toothbrush!!
I've used both, and prefer the Sonicare. I used a Sonicare for years, and switched to an Oral B unit due to the 'gunk' under the screw type brush head. Switched back to Sonicare when they came out with the flexcare model that has the non-screw type brush head. Still get some gunk, but it is so much easier to clean than the old style. The Sonicare seems to be a more aggressive cleaner, but will say the dentist never seemed to notice a difference.
The Oral B is much much better. I used a sonicare for about a year. I started having gum problems and bad check ups with the dentists. I have been using Oral B for about four months now (the 5000 series) and it is amazing. The head is much better and allows you to get into all the nooks an crannies. The dentists has commented on the difference too.
Gratitude - If you were asking me what model I use, it is the Philips Sonicare FlexCare Plus HX6972/10. It is one of the units with the UV brush head sanitizer on it. Take a look at the brush head refills called Proresults for the flexcare styles and the refills for the Elite or Essence units to see the difference.
Sonicare ROCKS! My dentist told me last time that my gums were much, much healthier than they used to be. You do not "brush" with the Sonicare: you position it at a 45 degree angle against the gum line and then just switch to the next tooth. I have NEVER had a Sonicare break - but I have had two of them STOLEN by the Transportation "Safety" Administration. (Seriously!) Several reviewers have commented on "gunk". This stuff varies greatly depending on the toothpaste used. I use ACT rinse before brushing and about once a week I just leave a little extra rinse in a glass. Then when I finish brushing, I just put the head of the Sonicare into the rinse - and presto change-o! All the gunk is gone. I also rinse it under running water WHILE RUNNING THE HEAD after [almost] every brushing. The narrower head looks skimpy, but it really reaches back in your mouth easily.
A few months ago I wasn't sure which toothbrush to buy, Oral B or Sonicare and started a similar forum here on Amazon. One poster said "buy both of them" There were good rebate programs at that time. Oral B had a 50% rebate and Target had the Sonicare on sale, w/ Sonicare sending an additional rebate of $10.00. The Oral B is used in the shower and the Sonicare is used in the bathroom. The first Sonicare had to be returned because the NiCad batteries would not hod a charge for a Sonicare with nickelhylide batteries which have been good. The Sonicare brush works the way it should and seems to have more of a professional look to it in comparison to the oral B. The Oral B is the workhorse of the two with a 2 speed motor which is a great feature. The physical apperance of the Oral B is somewhat overdone and kidlike. Both brushes work in the same way. They simply vibrate. They both throw off Electro Magnetic Forces when turned on. My suggestion is buy both the oral B and Soniccare and make up your own mind which is best or if you can't, buy the brush that is the best deal/rebate. Don't overdo with the cleaning; especially around crowns of you have any.
I have had my Sonicare for 6 years and never had a problem - knock on wood. The dentist was very pleased with the state of my teeth and gums at my last check up. I will go with Sonicare again when it comes time to replace this one.
Marie in Macon says "I use ACT rinse before brushing ..."
The instructions on my bottles of ACT say to use immediately after brushing and don't eat or drink for 30 minutes. I think the fluoride in ACT is supposed to bind to the enamel and that takes a little time. I think using it before brushing reduces its effect to a mouthwash without fluoride. You might check with a dentist since I'm no expert, just a bottle reader.
I'm on my fourth sonicare toothbrush as I've been using sonicare for over least ten years. I've always brushed my teeth while in the shower as well so I don't notice all the crud as a problem but it's easy to rinse while showering. Granted, they don't last but a couple of years before the batteries won't hold a charge. I think they are a just fantastic.
I'm so glad to find this discussion! I just purchased a Oral B Professional Series 3250 from BJ's Warehouse Club. It came with 1 charger, 2 brushes/handles, and a travel case for $99.00. I purchased a set for my hubby and myself and a set for my son and daughter. My son just got braces and my daughter is getting ready to get hers. My first thought was that it would be more comfortable to brush with a Dremel tool... My son came to me in tears because his teeth were already sore from braces. I was ready to box it up and take it back to BJ's! I tried it again last night adn I think I can get used to it. I'm not sure if my kids will be able to use theirs though. I didn't realize that the 3250 only has one speed... The 3000 has three speeds. Also, the pressure indicator is pretty ridiculous. You would have to put enough pressure to eat a hole through you gum to make the light come on. I wish the timer beeped instead of "rumbling". I can't compare to the Sonicare. I debated between the two myself and decided on the Oral B because of the shape of the head. It seemed to me that it would get into harder to reach places better. I just wish I'd paid more attention to the features on my Oral B before purchasing. The Speed control would be worth extra $$ to have.
My dentist recommended the Sonicare four years ago. Being a manual toothbrush guy, it took a little getting used to but my checkups have been great since then. My wife did not join me and now she is having gum issues with brushing too hard and too much toothpaste. You will not go back once you use one as they really make my teeth feel very clean. Great investment but as usual, the replacement brushes are expensive. I am still on the original unit and it has worked flawlessly for four years.