Dental Floss and Oral Irrigator

Dental floss and oral irrigator

Modern dentistry combines therapeutic methods, which seek to preserve teeth for as long as possible in the dental arches, with preventive methods, which establish healthy habits with the aim of delaying or stopping the appearance of dental diseases.

Preparation and filling materials and techniques have evolved significantly in recent decades so that patients have access to quality dental services. In recent years, however, attention has begun to focus on ways to prevent dental disease.

It is much easier to prevent a condition than to treat it, because a restored tooth will never have 100% of the qualities of a natural tooth, even if the difference is not significant.

Patients frequently ask their dentist about adjunctive tooth hygiene.

They are curious how interdental spaces, the area under the bridge bodies or more difficult to reach areas such as the wisdom molars, especially the distal portion of the molars, can be cleaned as the toothbrush has limited access to these areas.

Dental floss or interdental brushes are supposed to be the most useful tools for cleaning the spaces between teeth.

Floss can be of varying thicknesses according to the size of the spaces and can be silk or waxed.

On the other hand, interdental brushes are available in different shapes and sizes, satisfying the requirements and needs of patients.

The oral irrigator has appeared on the market more recently and is a device that directs a jet of liquid towards the interdental surfaces. The designed liquid can be plain water or in combination with an antiseptic solution, for example mouthwash.

Depending on the direction in which it is directed, the jet can remove the remaining food debris between the teeth as well as some of the dental plaque. However, it is assumed that flossing removes more interdental plaque than irrigating.

The oral irrigator has settings in terms of the strength of the water jet, from very weak to very strong.

After the first few uses, patients may experience bleeding gums, which is normal and part of the process of the gums adapting to the new hygiene method.

However, if bleeding persists for more than a week, the patient should consider reducing the intensity of the irrigator and seeing a dentist to eliminate the possible periodontal cause.

Using the dental irrigator is simple.

It has a reservoir to be filled with water or antiseptic solutions and an active tip to be positioned interdentally.

It is important that the movements made with the irrigator in operation direct the food debris towards the teeth and not the gums.

Once the debris pushes subgingival, it will cause gum inflammation and pain.

Irrigators can be operated wirelessly, by batteries or by plugging into an electrical outlet. The mouth irrigator and floss can be used in parallel. The former will remove food debris coarsely and more easily, while the floss will smooth interdental surfaces, removing plaque.

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