Recently, water flossing has become more and more popular. Whether you get a Waterpik machine, a specialty toothbrush with water flossing capabilities, or some other form, water flossing is becoming much more accessible. So, what is it? Is it good for you? Should it replace your traditional flossing with string floss? We’ve got some answers for you.
Water flossing, also known as water picking, has many advantages. Water picking is an easy to use a machine that uses a high-pressure stream of water to remove food particles and plaque from teeth. This action can massage gums, improving gum health, and reach areas that traditional floss may not reach. The pressure of the water can push food particles away from the teeth and clean them at the same time.
Water picking does require a water picking device, which can be expensive. Using a water pick is fairly simple. Fill the water reservoir and adjust the pressure. While leaning over a sink, use the tip of the water pick to shoot water in between teeth and along the gumline. Start with the back teeth and move forward. When finished, eject tip and clean the device.
Dentists have preached traditional flossing for decades—and for a good reason. It’s an extremely effective method of removing food particles and plaque from teeth. Flossing is a cheap and easily accessible method of oral care. It can be done anywhere with little effort.
Flossing daily has long been a practice of those with good oral hygiene. When flossing is not part of your daily routine, you become vulnerable to gum disease. If gum disease does occur, the gums will swell and bleed when you floss. Even so, flossing is still relevant. Flossing less can lead to more gum sensitivity.
Water Flossing vs. Traditional Flossing
Though both of these techniques can be beneficial to your oral health, water flossing should not replace traditional flossing. Water flossing is an excellent addition to your oral hygiene routine, but it is no substitute for flossing.
According to a study done in the Journal of Clinical Dentistry, those who used both traditional string floss and water flossing saw a 74.4% reduction in plaque. In comparison, those who just used string floss had a 57.7% reduction in plaque.
Using both water flossing and traditional flossing can combat plaque and keep your teeth healthy longer. Reduce chances of gum disease and tooth decay with multiple flossing techniques.
For the best oral health brush twice daily, floss with string floss daily, floss with a water pick where possible and visit the dentist regularly for professional cleanings and check-ups. Work fluoride in your routine where possible for the best results.