The chances are high that your dentist or dental hygienist has been pushing you to floss daily every time you visit. If you’re like most people, however, you probably don’t manage to floss every day. You might not even floss at all.
Maybe it’s because flossing can be painful, time-consuming, and feel like an annoying chore that provides no immediate results. We all know flossing is essential, yet so few of us manage to do it regularly and keep it up daily year after year.
If you’re looking for an option that can make flossing easier, devices that use water may work for you. Water flossing is done with a tool known as a water pick. This tool cleans your teeth and gums without physical contact using a concentrated stream of water to flush out plaque and bacteria. You can think of it as a sort of small pressure washer for your teeth and gums, and one which can be a lot more fun to use than dental floss!
Advantages of Water Flossing vs. Conventional Flossing
A significant advantage of water flossing is that it is not as painful on your gums and doesn’t cause bleeding as regular floss can. These benefits can help take the fear and stress out of flossing and lead to better dental hygiene habits.
Water flossers are simple to use and do a more effective job of cleaning your mouth than the piece of string that you might currently be using! Many users found that the water flosser reduced instances of gum disease and eliminated cases of bleeding almost entirely.
Types of Water Flossers
Most water flossing devices feature a hollow tube connected to a remote water reservoir, which holds a relatively large water supply, similar to the way a coffee maker works. The water flows down the hose and goes up into the pressure washing nozzle, where it sprays onto the teeth and gums in a concentrated stream. This is the most popular style of flosser, but there are also a few other options.
The second type of water flosser features a reservoir directly in the handle of the pressure washing tool, which allows the entire device to be self-contained and cordless. It may even contain a battery to eliminate the need for a power cord. One drawback of this water pick design is that you need to keep refilling the small water reservoir over and over again if you need more time to finish cleaning your teeth. This issue is not present with the remote reservoir style of water flossing machines.
There is also a third style of water flossing device which attaches directly to your bathroom faucet. This style is more challenging to work with and occupies your primary faucet, so it is not as popular.
Features to Look for in a Water Flossing Device
When looking for a new water flosser, there are some key features that can enhance your daily flossing experience and the effectiveness of the tool.
Adjustable pressure is the first feature you’ll want to be on the lookout for. The ability to adjust the water stream pressure will give you a better level of control, which can both help improve cleaning effectiveness and reduce any mess caused by overspray from the hose.
Reducing the water stream’s pressure is also critical for those with sensitive gums or teeth and canker sores. By turning down the pressure, you can eliminate any potential pain caused by hitting sensitive teeth, gums, or sore areas with a powerful pressurized water stream. These adjustable pressure water flossers allow you to select an exact amount of water volume and pressure, making them much nicer to work with than those without this feature.
A few other useful features that can help add to the experience of using a water flosser include:
Pulsating Water Pressure: Pulsating water pressure can help remove any accumulated deposits of plaque or bits of food, which a steady stream might not be able to clean.
Interchangeable Spray Nozzle Tips: These differently designed tips can be optimized for people with braces to help clean in all the awkward and hard-to-reach places. They can also increase pressure, which can be helpful for those with stubborn plaque deposits.
Rotating Head: A rotating head design allows you to angle the spray head to reach spots that are difficult to access with a fixed spray head, making the tool more effective at cleaning plaque from all areas of the mouth.
Other Water Flosser Features To Consider
After you have considered all of the above features, it is good to consider a few final things in your selection of a water flossing tool. These factors include, but are not limited to, price, size, and the ease and speed of changing or replacing batteries.
Try it for Yourself!
Regardless of which water flossing device you choose in the end, your dentist and dental hygienist will probably be pleased that you are cleaning your mouth more often and more effectively. Using a water pick can significantly reduce your risk of gum disease and instances of gum bleeding while also removing plaque and bacteria, which will lead to better overall dental health.
Have you tried a water pick, and do you have a personal favorite? Feel free to share your choice with us in the comments below!