Dental flossing has hit the headlines in recent days following a statement from US health officials declaring that flossing teeth has no scientific basis. The recent news has of course raised a discussion around the subject of dental hygiene, questioning what exactly is the most effective way of cleaning teeth to combat plaque and gum disease. While many of us may breathe a sigh of relief at the idea of no more flossing, dentists at Gipsy Lane Advanced Dental Practice offer an alternative insight into the effective removal and disruption of plaque based on industry evidence.
Dentists at Advanced Dental Practice are strongly advising patients to introduce the use of interdental cleaners or brushes into their daily oral hygiene. These interdental brushes are cleverly designed to clean between the teeth, reaching the smallest of crevices and complicated spaces where a regular toothbrush cannot. The powerful tooth cleaning weapons not only complement the regular brushing technique but also offer an effective way of keeping gums and teeth healthy and free from plaque.
The British Society of Dental Hygiene and Therapy also provided an interesting reaction to the latest no-floss news saying that the evidence for interdental brushes reducing gum disease is slightly stronger than for dental floss, although still weak. So, where exactly does this leave us? We know for certain that brushing teeth alone is inadequate given that it only cleans three of the five surfaces of our teeth and cleaning between the teeth is critical to good oral hygiene. To reaffirm the need for regular use of interdental cleaners, President of the BSDHT Michaela O’Neill confirmed that “regular interdental cleaning removes the biofilms that develop in between teeth. This is commonly called plaque and hosts various microorganisms, which, if left in situ, can lead to dental decay. It is this plaque that we aim to remove daily.”
To remove such damaging plaque, we firmly adhere to the use of interdental cleaners over traditional dental floss. The British Dental Association also supports this hygiene method with their scientific advisers claiming that dental floss is largely ineffective and recommends interdental brushes.
There is a vast range of interdental brushes available in various sizes and models with both flexible and straight necks. They provide us with a highly effectively approach to easily clean between teeth and gums. Without this, patients will face a build up of plaque leading to gum inflammation that can lead to further consequences, ultimately the loss of the tooth.
Dentists at Gipsy Lane Advanced Dental Practice also reinforce the need for patients to maintain a good standard of oral hygiene that includes regular brushing of the teeth to remove the plaque that causes gum disease. Evidence also clarifies that for all round oral health, the use of an electric toothbrush is more effective than manually brushing.
On a final note, we encourage a regular visit to our hygienist for regular scaling and polishing to reduce plaque build up. For further enquiries or advice please contact Gipsy Lane Advanced Dental Practice 0118 966 5656