Taking proper care of your teeth and gums is essential for a healthy smile. Not only can it help ward off dental problems like cavities and periodontal disease, but it can improve your appearance as well. Gum disease, in particular, can be detrimental to your heart health. Although brushing twice a day can certainly prevent it from developing, you must floss daily to remove all the harmful substances between teeth. However, you may be wondering which tool is more effective at cleaning these nooks and crannies – a Waterpik or dental floss? Read on to find out!
What Is a Waterpik?
Waterpik water flossers (also known as dental water jets or oral irrigators) are an excellent tool for cleaning between teeth. These devices use a pressurized stream of pulsating water to clean away food particles, bacteria, and plaque between teeth and underneath the gumline. Not only are they helpful for getting into the nooks and crannies of the mouth, but they help keep the breath fresher for longer. However, the rinsing action of Waterpiks may not be enough to remove plaque completely from the surface of the teeth. That’s why some people prefer to use dental floss first as it helps them scrape off and loosen plaque.
Should You Use Dental Floss or a Waterpik?
A Waterpik is excellent for people who wear braces or have nonremovable bridgework, crowns, or implants. It’s also great for anyone who finds dental floss hard to work with, such as those with arthritis. However, the benefits of a Waterpik should not discredit the incredible advantages of dental floss. Many dentists continue to encourage the traditional method of flossing. It’s incredibly important to follow the proper technique to avoid accidentally damaging soft oral tissues.
Does It Matter When You Floss?
As long as you do a thorough job, it doesn’t matter whether you floss before you brush or after. Some people claim that flossing first helps loosen harmful substances between teeth, which can be brushed away after. Others prefer to brush first to remove most of the plaque before flossing, allowing fluoride from toothpaste to reach areas that could be blocked by food. However, either way is acceptable according to the American Dental Association (ADA) and the Academy of Periodontology. Any order can keep your smile healthy!
Ultimately, the best dental hygiene tool is one that you’ll stick to, enjoy, and use daily. That might be a Waterpik for some people, while others may opt for dental floss. Both options are perfectly capable of helping you maintain a happy, healthy smile!
About the Practice
At Pelican Landing Dental, we strive to make every patient that walks through our door feel like a member of our very own family. Our team offers exceptional, state-of-the-art, individually tailored dental services unlike anywhere else. If you need help choosing between a Waterpik or dental floss, we can help you determine which tool is best for your needs. Visit our website or call (239) 948-2111 to make an appointment today!