Waterpik or Dental Floss?

Waterpik or dental floss?

According to the American Dental Association, it is recommended to floss at least once a day in order to maintain a healthy mouth. Are you flossing regularly? Or just the few days leading up to your next dentist appointment so you can tell your dentist you floss? We know the tricks, and are always trying to find more effective and efficient ways for you to keep that beautiful smile healthy. We have recently been asked if a waterpik can take the place of dental floss. Here are the pros and cons of the waterpik and dental floss!



  • What is a waterpik? Water flossers/Waterpiks dispense a small stream of water with a high-pressure to rinse and remove food particles between teeth.



  • For individuals who have sensitive teeth and gums, meaning they bleed when using floss, a waterpik is gentler and is a great alternative.



  • For those who have braces, waterpiks are extremely effective in that the water can remove food and bacteria from areas where brushing often can’t reach.



  • For individuals who aren’t as nimble, the waterpik is much easier to use than trying to coordinate fingers and floss.



  • However, while a waterpik may be easier to use, it still hasn’t been proven to do the job of flossing which is to remove sticky bacteria or plaque which causes cavities, irritates gums and causes gum disease.



  • There are five surfaces of your tooth, if you don’t floss, you are missing two of those surfaces between the teeth, that brushing doesn’t reach.



  • It doesn’t matter if you floss or brush first, so long as you do a thorough job at both. Many have resorted to floss picks, which we have found do not do an effective job.



  • While water flossing may sound more appealing, that white, silky string of regular old floss is what does the trick.

The proper way to floss is to pull about 18-24 inches of floss from the dispenser and wrap the ends around your index and middle fingers. Hold the floss tightly around each tooth in a C shape in order to hold close to the tooth, then move the floss back and forth in a push/pull motion and then up and down against the tooth. This will ensure you’re getting that tooth clean, and wiping away any food particles or plaque” says Dr. Espinosa.

With that, it appears floss wins the battle for the best way to clean between teeth. We always love hearing your questions, so make sure to keep them coming! You may call our office with your questions or send them along in the message box below. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Eric Chmiel

Eric Chmiel

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