Sonic Clean Between Machine: Does it Work?
By: Lauren Keith
The Sonic Clean Between Machine boasts less hassle than flossing your teeth alone, and with four steps, it'd better get your teeth sparkling. I head to Dr. Jayne Scherrman' s dental clinic in Cape Girardeau for this week's test.
First, dental assistant Wendy Newell tries two of the four steps in this cleaning machine. Wendy prefers brushing manually, so does she like the Sonic?
"It was good. I like this step for the most part. The brush itself gets the back of the teeth, but the front part, to me, it hit my teeth too hard," she says.
Now, step two, and this one is pretty interesting. The directions say to run this Gum Stimulator around your gum lines. You turn it on and trace the Stimulator around your gums.
'I've never done this at home and I can't say I would again!" laughs Wendy.
In fact, Dr. Jayne says most people really don't need to do this.
"As a dentist, I don't think that tip is going to do anything for you. It's too soft to get in between and then if you force it, you make a pocket which could actually allow plaque to seep in, if you're not careful," she says.
All right...two more steps to go. You thought the Gum Stimulator was a bit funny? You haven't seen anything yet.
"I've never tried the a tongue cleaner before!" says Dr. Jayne, and she's looking forward to using this one.
"That's goofy looking!" she laughs as she puts it in her mouth. It looks like a triangular tongue depressor. It has little nodules on it and the head moves back and forth once you press "on."
Well, Dr. Jayne almost gags while using this! I give her a lot of credit for doing this on TV. The Tonque Cleaner is supposed to prevent bad breath, but Dr. Jayne says that can be done by simply brushing your tongue in the morning.
"Maybe I got stuff off my tongue, maybe I didn't, but I would never use this at home!" she laughs.
However, Dr. Jayne's thoughts on the Sonic Clean Between Machine begin to change after she tries the Interdental tool.
"It's really pretty simple. You just put this in and it goes down," she says as she inserts the fine metal brush into the end.
Dr. Jayne thinks this particular tool really does get in between teeth where brushes often can't, especially for those of you who wear braces. However, she has this advice.
"I wouldn't force it because that blunt metal end will cause gums to bleed and you can do some major irritation with that," she says.
So, let's sum it up: is this $35 system worth your time and money?
"It' s ok. It's a gadget. Whether this does any better than flossing is debatable," says Dr. Jayne.
She also says don't be fooled. This automatic brush does not have supersonic waves like the more expensive Sonicare Ultrasound brushes.
"It's definitely not a Sonicare!" she says.
So, we like two of the four steps in the Sonic Clean Between Machine, but we don't like what the company charged me. The commercial claims you'll get two for the price of one at $19.95 plus shipping and handling. My receipt shows I paid shipping on the freebie, and that alone almost cost the same as the brush! The brush was $19.95 and shipping was $15! So, my second machine really wasn't truly free.
"I don't think it's a good deal. You can buy at automatic spin brush at many stores for ten bucks and you can also buy the separate interdental tools, which are great for braces and all of that would still be cheaper than this machine," says Dr. Jayne.
"C minus," says dental asst. Wendy Newell.
"C or C minus," says Dr. Jayne.
We know the machine itself functions properly, but Dr. Jayne and her staff think you'll find better brushes on the market.