Water flossing has been around for a long time. Some dentists strongly recommend them for optimal oral health, while others say brushing and string floss is enough. At Blaisdell Family Dentistry in Boise, we’ll use this space to weigh the pros and cons.
The first water-shooting device for cleaning between teeth was created in the early 1960’s by Colorado dentist Dr. Gerald Moyer and John Mattingly, a hydraulics engineer. It is now known by the brand name Waterpik, though the term is generically and there are similar products from other manufacturers. (Note: Blaisdell Family Dentistry does not necessarily endorse any specific brand.)
A water irrigation device oscillates a stream of water through a small, targeted tube to shoot out bits of food and plaque from around and between teeth. To use it, you insert the tube into your mouth, turn it on, and then lean over the sink with your mouth slightly open to let the water drain out as you guide the stream of shooting water around the gumline and gaps between teeth.
There have been over 65 studies that have substantiated the safety and efficacy of water flossing. They can reduce periodontal infection, remove plaque, and get deeper into soft tissue pockets than string floss can.
Where water flossers really excel is in cleaning around braces. They’re extremely efficient, and nothing could be easier.
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