Cleaning between your teeth helps remove plaque before it turns into tartar. Our dentists regularly remind us that the tried and true way to accomplish this daily task is by using dental floss. However, if you’re not keen on using dental floss or are tired of lying to your dentist that you are indeed flossing, there are other interdental cleaners available that may help you to keep your word and take better care of your teeth.
- Disposable Floss Picks
Floss picks are an extremely easy to use alternative to traditional floss. It contains a plastic handle and two plastic prongs, which make it look like a slightly bent “Y.” Floss is strung between the two prongs. To use it, you simply insert the floss between your teeth. When you are done flossing, just throw the flosser away. These are great option for traveling because they can be used like toothpicks for when you get food stuck between your teeth, and they do not take up much space in luggage.
- Non-Disposable Floss Picks
There are several brands of non-disposable floss picks available. These flossers contain a longer handle and a floss head. Depending on the brand, you’ll either have to purchase replacement floss heads or floss threaders. Since these interdental devices contain a longer handle, they make reaching the back teeth extremely easy, which can be a major issue for some people when using traditional dental floss.
- Interdental Brushes
Interdental brushes contain a handle and a thin bristled flossing head, which can be easier to use than traditional floss. Colgate recommends interdental brushes for individuals with joint or mobility problems that may have trouble flossing with regular dental floss. The added benefit of using an interdental brush is that it does not need to be thrown away after the end of a single use. Instead, you only have to throw these brushes away when they appear worn or bent. These are great for individuals who want to produce as little waste as possible while still maintaining good oral health.
- Water Flossers
Water flossers, also referred to as water picks, use a stream of water to clean between your teeth. These are extremely useful for individuals who do not want to stick an object between their teeth or who have very tight spaces between their teeth. Water flossers either hook up to your bathroom faucet or they contain a water tank that you fill before use and empty when you are finished. Many versions contain adjustable water pressures so that you get the interdental clean you desire. To use a water flosser, you simply hold the flossing end between your teeth and press a button. Water will flow between your teeth, removing food particles and plaque.
- Sonic AirFloss
The Sonic AirFloss is a variation of the water flosser or water pick. Instead of solely using water, it uses a mixture of air and water to clean between your teeth. To use this interdental cleaner, just place the head next to the space between your teeth and turn it on. The combination of water and air will thoroughly clean between your teeth to help you prevent gum disease.
- Dental Picks
Dental picks resemble interdental brushes. These interdental devices contain heads that either have short bristles or small rubber tines, which are used to remove food particles and plaque. To use a dental pick, simply insert it between your teeth and remove it. These interdental cleaning devices typically come in small packs, which means you can use them at home and take them with you on the go.
Alternative interdental products can help you keep the area between your teeth clean and free of plaque so that you can continue to maintain a healthy mouth. If you cannot decide which alternative floss product to use, a dentist can help you decide by recommending a product that takes into account the spaces between your teeth and suits your oral hygiene habits and lifestyle.
Williams & Daily Dental is a family and cosmetic dentist located in North Raleigh, NC with a team of dedicated dentists enthusiastic in their commitment to their patients. Contact Williams & Daily at (919) 846-9070 for more information and to schedule an appointment today.