Flossing is a key step in maintaining the health of your teeth and gums. Patients who floss avoid the gum disease and decay which are almost guaranteed problems for people who do not. If you are concerned about choosing the best tools to care for your teeth at home, we have all the details you need about water flossers and string floss here. The more informed you are, the more confident you will feel as you carefully care for your pearly whites.
Water Flosser vs String Floss: Points to Ponder
We considered several factors when reviewing the water flosser and comparing its performance with traditional floss.
- Price: Although waterflossers can cost between $30 and $70, the may be only cost slightly more than the lifetime supply of string floss that your water flosser would replace.
- Ease of Use: Both string floss and a waterflosser can do an excellent job in removing plaque and maintaining the health of your teeth and gums, but a waterflosser is much easier to use correctly than traditional floss.
- Electricity: If you already own an electric toothbrush or any other electric bathroom accessories that use up the outlet nearest your bathroom counter, you may want to consider the logistical aspect of using your water flosser. Because waterflossers require electricity for use, consider where your water flosser will plug in and how you will fit your water flosser in with your other bathroom appliances.
- Quality of Flossing: While ease of use factors into the quality of clean you can achieve while using your water flosser or string floss, weighing in on a professional’s opinion of which type of floss can acheive the best results is important.
Can Water Flossers Replace String Floss?
No concrete verdict has been reached on whether or not a water flosser can clean the gaps between your teeth as effectively as string floss. The ADA has made no comment, and some dentists have no opinion on the matter, but most dentists agree that water flossers cannot replace manual string flossing.
Simple logic explains why string floss does a superior job at removing plaque –spraying water at the gaps between your teeth simply cannot get the traction it needs to remove sticky plaque and left behind food. For safety reasons, a waterflosser will never spit water out fast enough to acheive the “power washed” effect users may imagine.
Scraping is what cleans your teeth, which can only be accomplished with string floss. When you floss, the goal is to remove plaque and food so that the food does not become tartar, cause decay, or lead to gum disease.
Certainly water flossers or air flossers can remove food and plaque, but not as completely or effectively as string floss.
Are Water Flossers My Best Option?
While most dentists agree that water flossers do not clean your teeth as well as traditional floss, in some cases a water flosser may be a better choice.
Water flossers may be better than traditional floss if you find yourself in any of these oral health situations:
- Sensitive Gums. If your gums are sore and bleed when you floss, the gentle spray of a water flosser may be a more comfortable and effective choice for you.
- Braces. If you use traditional metal braces, a water flosser is much easier to use than string floss and is thereby more effective during orthodontic treatment.
- Dexterity issues. Threading and weaving string floss is difficult for patients with poor dexterity–water flossers are easy to use and ensure effective cleaning for people with even the lowest range of motion.
In other words, when string floss can’t be used, a water flosser provides a perfect solution.
In addition, for patients who find traditional floss to be so cumbersome and uncomfortable, to the point that they avoid flossing altogether, water flossing is a much better alternative to not flossing at all.
If you can use string floss but choose not to and are looking to waterflossing as a better alternative than not flossing at all, you may want to explore different types of string floss. Some types of string floss are easier and more comfortable to use and all string floss when used correctly will achieve a higher level of clean than water floss.
Advantages to Using Traditional Floss:
- Scrapes teeth more effectively, achieving a higher level of clean
- Lower cost when compared with water flosser
Advantaged to Using a Water Flosser
- Easy to use
- Best solution for people with poor dexterity, braces, sensitive gums, or who simply won’t floss with string
String floss is always the best option for keeping your teeth healthy and strong, but water floss will always be better than not flossing at all.
For more information about water flossing, read our article here:.
According to the National Institutes of Health , the only condition more prevalent than tooth decay is the common cold. If you are afraid you have a cavity, you may be right! Although cavities are hard to detect on your own in the beginning, once the decay has progressed and if you eat sweets, you may trigger the pain of a cavity. Whether or not you are in the beginning stages or more advanced stages of a cavity, the best way to maintain your teeth and avoid more cavities is by seeing your dentist every 6 months for an exam and cleaning.
How Do Cavities Form?
While your mouth is full of bacteria, not all bacteria is harmless. In fact, when you eat sugary or starchy foods like pretzels or candy, the bacteria in your mouth feeds on that sugar and then produces acid. The acid formed when bacteria metabolizes sugar is strong enough to break down the enamel of your teeth. Your enamel, or the hard protective shell of your teeth, will erode completely when the dangerous acid is left on the surface of your teeth for an extended period of time and a dental cavity or cavities begin to form.
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research has found that cavities can be reversed when detected and treated at an early stage in their formation. Fluoridated toothpaste and fluoride mouthwash can help strengthen your enamel and prevent cavities from growing larger.
Do I Have a Cavity?
How can you know you have a cavity? Until the cavity grows large enough to hit a nerve, you will feel nothing. The enamel has no nerves, so an enamel-deep cavity can only be detected by a dental professional. If your cavity becomes large enough to penetrate the soft inner core of your teeth called the “dentin”, you may start to feel the signs of a cavity. You may experience sensitivity to cold or hot foods, feel a dull ache or sharp pain when eating sweets, or you may even experience mild swelling in rare cases.
Aside from oral pain, you may be able to see cavities form on the surface of your teeth. You can recoginize cavities by the brown or yellow spots they form on your teeth’s surface.
Why Do My Teeth Hurt When I Eat Sugar?
Why do sweet foods make your cavities hurt? The enamel erosion caused by tooth decay allows acid to penetrate the tender core of your teeth. When you eat sweet foods, the bacteria in your mouth produce acid that burns the nerves in your teeth. produced. This results in sensitivity and pain when you eat sweet foods on an advanced cavity.
Visit the Dentist
If you think you have a cavity, you should call and schedule an appointment with your dentist immediately. Preventing or reversing a cavity is possible in the early stages, but by the time you feel sensitivity or pain only a dentist can reverse the damage.
Your dentist will take an x-ray to see how deep your cavity goes. Typically, dentists fill a cavity with metal to strengthen the tooth and prevent bacteria from hiding in the crevices and deep pores formed by the cavity. In severe cases, your dentist will need to replace part of your tooth with a crown and/or root canal.
Whether or not you think you have a cavity, seeing a dentist every 6 months is the best way to save the pain and expense of treating cavities and other dental emergencies. The reason the American Dental Association recommends a cleaning and exam with your dentist twice a year is because perfectly healthy teeth can start to decay in 6 months without proper maintenance.
Platinum Dental Care has been providing service for patients in Utah looking for a “Dentist Near Me” for over 30 years. Our service is top-notch and our practices carry the latest dental technology. We never over-charge and we strive for complete transparency in our billing and treatment proposals. If you are new to Utah County, Wasatch County, or Salt Lake County, call Platinum Dental Care today at 801-806-4645.