Yup, you heard me right. All too often, I hear my patients say with humor in their voices, “Please not the flossing lecture again, I can’t lie… I don’t floss as often as I should”. Well today is your lucky day, if flossing just isn’t your thing!
New research is emerging, showing that flossing may not be the end all be all to achieving a healthy mouth. Now don’t get me wrong, this statement doesn’t absolve you completely from not using any plaque removal aids. However, it does widen your options.
Gum disease is linked to a myriad of systemic illnesses such as Diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, or low birth weights of babies (just to name a few). Both gingivitis and periodontitis are completely preventable diseases, but the prevention starts at home with YOU!
Plaque and calculus build-up are the primary causes of gingival inflammation. Plaque is classified as a soft sticky white substance that adheres to the teeth; This soft cheese like substance consists of millions of acid-producing bacteria. The acid and toxins emitted by these bacteria cause inflammation of the gums and can eventually lead to decay and tooth loss. Often times, this decay can start between the teeth, areas that the toothbrush can not reach. Once decay starts in one tooth it can easily spread to adjacent teeth.
But let's get back to the point... Maybe you find flossing too hard or time consuming. There are several products on the market that help you effectively remove plaque and food debris wherever you are that are as easy as 1,2,3. Check out this top pick, the soft-pick! Similar to the age old design of toothpicks, this rubber based pick can easily maneuver between the teeth as well as mechanically remove plaque with its tiny finger-like projections. Since this handy pick is rubber based, you can simply rinse it it and re-use it many times for maximum benefits.
Next... let's talk about the proxy brush. This hand-held wire brush comes in all shapes and sizes for all dental needs. This brush can be used by patients in Ortho, people with implants, or anyone in between. The trick with these little guys is to find the shape and size that are right for you. My recommendation would be to find a size that can easily pass between the teeth or bracket, but is snug enough to target both side of each adjacent teeth at the same time. This brush is great for removing plaque from between the teeth quickly and effectively.
For further questions and concerns please don't hesitate to ask any of the wonderful staff here at Braeside Dental. Please note, these products are to be used in conjunction with regular professional hygiene maintenance and exams, as part of dental health regime. -Zoe