Flossing technique is a widely discussed topic among dentists. Let us clear the air...
Simply brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day is a great start, but you need to do more to ensure you have excellent oral hygiene. Tooth brushing cleans about three-quarters of the surface area of each of your teeth. Food particles can be stuck in the small spaces between your teeth, leading to plaque and bacteria build-up. Our dentists have told the majority of us, “you need to floss more”. As it both makes your gums look great in photos and better breaths, poor oral hygiene can lead to long-term damage such as gum disease and cavities. So what should you use to clean in between those pearly whites?
Waterpik, also known as water jets, or oral irrigators, is a pressurized stream of pulsating water. An interesting flossing technique that is not yet widely adopted, but this is a better option for those with sensitive gums. They are placed between the teeth and under the gum line to clean away plaque, food particles and nasty bacteria. People generally prefer a Waterpik as it is easier to clean in between the teeth than standard floss. They are easy to use and can help assist people who experience various limitations (arthritis, braces, dental implants etc.) to clean their teeth properly, getting into the hard to reach gaps or tightly spaced teeth.
Whilst the Waterpiks have many perks; there are a few disadvantages. The water may not be enough to remove large amounts of build-up. In this instance, we recommend going in with regular floss and follow up with a Waterpik. Whist Waterpiks contain no risk. They are a lot more expensive than traditional floss and generally have slightly more mess. We suggest being prepared for this or consider purchasing a waterproof one to use in the shower.
Piksters are also another method used to clean in between the teeth but using tiny cylindrical bristles with a malleable wire core ranging in sizes to fit with ease in between the gaps of your teeth. It is also an excellent choice for people with orthodontic work with hard to reach places.
Some people have no gaps between their teeth, so the brushes are only suitable in certain situations. This is a popular flossing technique, however some people find them painful when using the wrong size and can cause damage, so please seek advice when choosing the correct size.
Oldie but a goody...string dental floss. Available in multiple formats, from long strands to dental picks. Affordable to the majority of people in from a variety of suppliers. All the options are designed to efficiently control and clean food and bacteria in between the teeth. Some people prefer the manual floss option as they find management of the movement.
Unfortunately, the string floss does have some cons. The majority of people find they can not reach the floss into some areas. Leading to build up and the risk of future damage. Another common issue people find is gum irritation leading to bleeding.
The best dental hygienic flossing technique comes from an effective routine you stick to daily. All option has benefits and does the job when used alongside brushing. Personal preference wins in this case when practised routinely. We recommend brushing twice a day and cleaning in between the teeth once a day. For the ultimate in clean, consider using both twice a day.
In addition to practising good oral hygiene, you should visit your dentist regularly for a check-up and professional clean. Just remember that we can tell if you floss or not.
If you need dental services, visit Brite Family Dental at Stafford, Brisbane. We offer a relaxing, family-friendly environment with the highest standards of care. Please book an appointment or call us on 07 3359 1029.