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Water flosser: What is it? How do I use it?

17 August 2022

What is a Water flosser?

Flossing is important to maintain good oral hygiene, string flossing while effective can be an awkward and difficult task.

If you are looking for an easy and effective means of flossing, then a water flosser might be right for you. The water flosser uses the movement of water (hydrokinetics) to loosen and remove plaque and bacteria whilst gently cleansing the gumline.

A water flosser is an oral irrigator; it is a handheld device that uses water pressure which is released in steady pulses to remove plaque and food from between your teeth.

A water flosser is an alternative for those who have difficulties with traditional flossing. The American Dental Association has tested and confirmed that a Waterpik is a safe and effective method of removing sticky film like plaque and other build-ups. Not only is the water flosser an effective means of fighting cavities and gum disease, but it also has the ability to reduce the risk of gingivitis (the early form of gum disease).

How do I use a water flosser? 

 The Waterpik is the ideal tool for those who struggle with flossing by hand. There are many instances where the traditional method, though practical, is not suitable for all individuals. Those who suffer from joint pain or gum sensitivities might feel more drawn to the water flosser. The attraction lies in the fact that the water flosser appears to be a more straightforward way to maintain good oral hygiene. 

 To use, fill the reservoir with lukewarm water. Then put the flosser tip into your mouth. Once it is on, lean over the sink to avoid a mess. Hold the handle at a 90-degree angle and spray. The water will come out in a steady pulse and begin cleaning your teeth. 

 Start from the back of your mouth for maximum efficiency and work towards the front. Take your time to thoroughly go over the gum line and the space between each tooth. Be careful to not neglect the back of your teeth. 

 Cleaning your teeth at least once a day is essential to maintain good oral hygiene. Dentists recommend brushing with a toothbrush twice daily for two minutes, followed by flossing. Doing so will help to fight against unwanted bacteria. 

Why Use a Waterflosser?

Fresher Breath 

One of the functions of flossing is to reduce bad breath. Those who do not floss regularly, risk food remnants being left lodged between the teeth. Without flossing or brushing thoroughly the food in your mouth attracts bacteria which can spread. Sulphur compounds are then released, and the bacteria causes bad breath. 

Healthier Gums  

When we do not floss, bacteria from plaque build-ups can cause inflammation and discomfort. Flossing plus brushing reduces mild gum disease, and gingivitis, significantly better than toothbrushing alone. 

Enhance your Smile - Brightens Teeth

Using a Waterpik is one of the easier ways to keep your smile white. Water flossing cleans off excess plaque and build-up, making your teeth yellow without risking developing tooth sensitivities from harsh whitening strips. 

 Cleaning Dental Work

 The water flosser might be the best option for maintaining a healthy smile for those who have dental work. Whether it is crowns, bridges, veneers, or implants, the water flosser is able to effectively clean the mouth without further irritating sensitive areas. 

Flossing with Braces 

 The water flosser has proven to be a more effective way of cleaning plaque and bacteria without pain or discomfort. For best results, it is recommended that the water flosser be used with the orthodontic tip. This tip is equipped with a tapered brush which removes plaque from braces and orthodontics. 

 Better Checkups 

 The bi-annual dental cleaning and checkup involved a variety of procedures designed to keep your teeth and gums healthy. During your oral examination, dentists are searching for any signs of decay and disease. Utilizing the Waterpik regularly is essential to upkeeping one’s oral hygiene. As the water flosser works effectively to prevent decay and build-up on the teeth, checkups will be less painful, and take up a lot less time. 

 You May be More Likely to Floss Regularly 

 For many the water flosser is not only simpler, but it is also much more pleasant than traditional flossing. Most water flossers have the capacity to massage the gums, further, it is expected that functions like this which make practicing oral hygiene more enjoyable will encourage others to floss more regularly. 

The Bottom Line 

In practice, it is highlighted that standard dental floss is considered to be the most effective tool for flossing. Dental floss not only allows you to scrape up and down the sides of each tooth, but it also allows for every area of the mouth to be cleansed, especially those hard-to-see areas. 

However, suppose you are looking to substitute your dental floss for a water flosser. In that case, there really is no wrong answer as both methods have proven to be effective.  

A study published by The Clinical Dentistry illustrated that when comparing the efficacy of a water flosser against traditional dental floss (both used in combination with a manual toothbrush). The research indicates that those who used the water flosser in combination with the manual toothbrush had a 74.4 percent reduction in plaque and a significant reduction in gingivitis and bleeding gums. While those who used traditional dental floss witnessed a 57.7 precent decrease in plaque, gingivitis and bleeding gums. 

 While these results heavily favour the water flosser, Dentists still recommend traditional dental floss in addition to or as an alternative to water flossing. 

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