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September 05, 2023 4 min read
A study suggests that routine brushing is perhaps the most important step in ensuring good oral hygiene. Besides brushing, dental professionals and associations also recommend flossing regularly to ensure good oral hygiene. However, when it comes to maintaining oral hygiene, most people prioritize brushing and skip flossing.
With traditional string flossing, many people struggle to effectively maneuver the floss between their teeth and along the gum line, which ends up in aggressive flossing that irritates the gum and causes discomfort and bleeding. String floss may not reach all areas between teeth. Traditional flossing also takes time, especially for individuals with braces, dental work, or conditions that make manual dexterity difficult.
If you find traditional flossing problematic, modern water flossing tools can be a more efficient way to maintain your oral health than not flossing at all.
Water flossing is a modern way to floss your teeth and gums. Instead of using a piece of string to clean between your teeth like traditional flossing, you use a special handheld device called a water flosser to shoot tiny, gentle streams of water along your gumline and teeth.
This targeted stream of water helps wash away food bits, germs, and plaque from places your toothbrush might not reach easily. Water flossing is great for people who find regular flossing tricky or uncomfortable.
Using a water flosser offers several advantages. For instance, they are:
1. Gentle Yet Effective on the Gums
Unlike traditional flossing, with water flossers, you won’t have to use tricky floss strings that can sometimes poke or hurt your gums. Instead, the handheld device will provide a stream of water that is not rough or harsh and cause your gum to bleed. Even with its gentle flossing function, the water effectively enters your teeth and gum line and removes food bits and germs that can lead to gum disease.
2. Works Well with Braces and Dental Implants
When you have braces on, your teeth will have tiny spaces that regular floss can struggle to reach. On the other hand, dental implants are only a replacement for your natural teeth. Hence, they need special care to last long. Water flossing won’t cause any damage to your braces or implants. Neither do they make cleaning your braces or implant difficult. Instead, the pulsating water stream ensures you can floss without worrying about food particles in your teeth and gum.
This simplicity of water flossers makes them a great choice for children, elderly, and anyone who struggles with traditional flossing.
With water flossing, you can achieve a thorough clean in less time than traditional flossing, making it easier to stick to your oral hygiene routine. With regular floss, you have to manually slide it between each tooth, which can take a while, especially if you have braces or dental work. But with a water flosser, you simply aim the water stream at your teeth to clean them quickly and efficiently.
5. Floss How You Like
One of the interesting features of water flossers is that they have adjustable pressures, which means you can pick how strong or gentle you want your flossing to be. It means if your gums are feeling a bit sensitive, you can choose a lower pressure, and if you want a deeper clean, you can pick a stronger pressure. This way, you can tailor your flossing experience to your comfort level and specific dental needs.
A water flosser is a great addition to any individual oral hygiene routine. However, how you use it will determine the results you get. Consider the following oral health tips to ensure you enjoy the benefits of water flossing regardless of your dental needs.
• Use Appropriate Pressure for Your Gums
Everyone has different dental needs. However, keep in mind that when using a water flosser, if the pressure is too strong, it might hurt your gums and if it is too weak, it might not clean your teeth properly. When water flossing, ensure the pressure is gentle enough not to hurt your gums but strong enough to wash away all the yucky stuff between your teeth and gums.
Also, start with a lower pressure if you are new to water flossing, and gradually increase it as you get comfortable. If you don’t know what pressure to stop at, listen to your gums – they will tell you if the pressure is too much.
• The technique is Key with Water Flossing
Hold the water flosser at a 90-degree angle to your gums and gently guide the tip along your gumline and between your teeth. While doing this, start from the back of your mouth and work your way forward. This way, you push the debris toward the front, where it is easier to spit out. Besides this, spend a few seconds on each tooth and gap. Don't rush through it so the water can wash away the debris and plaque effectively.
• Clean Your Flosser
Lastly, don’t forget to wash your water flosser after each use. When you use the water flosser, it sprays water all around your mouth, and that water can carry away tiny bits of food and germs, which may stick inside the flosser. Cleaning the flosser helps prevent any bacterial growth.