Is Water Flossing Useless Against Gum Disease And Tooth Decay?

Is water flossing useless in the fight against gum disease and tooth decay? Here's what you need to know about your flossing options

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April 8, 2019
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Tooth decay remains a massive problem in the United States. Periodontal disease is even worse. An estimated 37.5 million Americans are suffering from this form of gum disease. Fortunately, proper flossing can help stave off the problem.

The problem is that many people don’t floss properly, so they are at high risk of gum disease. A growing number of people are using alternative types of flossing, which may put them at risk. You should learn more about the prognosis for water flossing. Is it a good option to consider? Or is it putting you at a high risk of gum disease and tooth decay?

The Overview of Water Flossing

We all know that daily flossing is essential to the overall health of our mouth, but with so many conflicting reports is a water flosser also known as a waterpik better than the traditional dental floss? We asked dental professionals from Birch Dental Group for their opinion.

Traditional Dental Floss

Traditional dental floss has been the go-to for our daily flossing routine for years and years. It is super convenient, can be purchased almost anywhere, doesn’t take up any space in your bathroom and easy to transport. So, it’s perfect right? Well, not necessarily, there are pros and cons to this method of keeping your mouth clean and healthy.

Pros for traditional Dental Floss

We have already established that traditional dental floss is ideal for people on the go or who a short on space, it is also very good at maintaining overall oral health. Flossing daily reduces plaque and tar build up and keeps gums strong and resilient. Other benefits of flossing include better breath, whiter teeth and reduced cost.

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Cons for traditional dental Floss

If you have dexterity issues, flossing can be hard work, you may well struggle to reach the back of your mouth or even effectively floss easy to reach areas. Flossing can also cause gum bleeding and sensitivity, especially if some of the fibers become stuck between tightly packed teeth. Whilst some brands come pre waxed to limit the friction, it can still be tricky to use, especially towards the molar region of your mouth.

Water-Piks

Whilst water piks aren’t particularly new, they aren’t as tried and tested as the traditional dental floss. Most water piks comes with adjustable settings, usually from 1 to 10. When you first start using the waterpik, you may find that it stings or there is a pinching sensation, classification of marketing research this may mean you need to adjust the settings to a lower one.

So what are the pros of a water pik?

Unlike dental floss, you can get the jet of the waterpik almost anywhere in your mouth, this is ideal for people with dexterity issues as they are now able to have full access to their teeth.

The waterjet can also get to those tricky to reach areas, such as the back of the mouth where flossing is tough. This means that your back teeth also get a good clean and have food particles removed.

Cons for the Water pik

While water piks can get to difficult to reach areas in your mouth, they require a lot of space in your bathroom for effective use. They need access to a water and electricity supply which can be problematic in some households. Unlike traditional dental floss they are also not very mobile and don’t travel well, they don’t have the convenience aspect that a pack of floss has. Water piks are also a lot more expensive than traditional dental floss, however it is a onetime cost and they do last.

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So, which one is better?

The argument between traditional floss and waterpiks will continue as it appears that it is mainly down to personal preference and circumstances as to which product a person chooses to use and own. If you struggle to reach and effectively clean the back of your mouth, using both may provide optimum results and oral health. If you have the space in your bathroom, the budget and don’t mind not being able to take it traveling with you, a waterpik is a sound investment as both traditional dental floss and waterpiks complement each other.

Understanding the Risks and Benefits of Water Flossing

There are a lot of things that you need to consider when you are flossing. It is important to make sure that you use the right type of floss to fight tooth decay and gum disease. Water flossing systems might not be the best option if they aren’t used right.