Your grandmother might have espoused the childhood rhyme, ‘An apple a day keeps the dentist away,’ but we propose a few additional practices that have a significant (and tried-and-tested) role to play as part of your daily dental routine.
Maintaining optimal oral hygiene goes beyond regular brushing (twice a day), flossing and tongue scraping. While these practices are essential, there's another unsung hero in the realm of oral care: interdental brushes. These tiny tools pack a powerful punch when it comes to reaching areas that traditional brushes might miss (and they are lifesavers when it comes to those with braces).
Incorporating interdental brushes into your daily oral hygiene routine comes with industry research and a myriad of benefits:
Understanding the gap | Why interdental brushes matter
The spaces between our teeth can be tricky to clean effectively. Toothbrush bristles struggle to effectively reach into these tight spaces, leaving behind plaque and food particles. This is where interdental brushes come into play. Designed with a slim, flexible profile, these brushes easily glide between teeth, reaching areas that are challenging for conventional brushes to access.
A comprehensive overview | The benefits of interdental brushes
The most common oral diseases are predominantly interdental diseases, which makes preventive efforts a must. Dentists and oral hygienists cannot stop singing the praises of interdental brushes as a proactive step in achieving optimal plaque control.
#1 Plaque prevention:
These little brushes are adept at removing plaque - that sticky film of bacteria that can lead to cavities and gum disease. By effectively cleaning between teeth, interdental brushes help prevent plaque buildup, reducing the risk of oral health issues.
#2 Gum health:
Gum disease often starts in the spaces between teeth, where traditional brushing and flossing may fall short. Regularly using interdental brushes effectively removes debris and stimulates the gums, promoting blood circulation and overall gum health.
#3 Cavity defence:
Cavities often develop in areas with trapped food particles and bacteria. Interdental brushes excel in cleaning these spaces, providing an additional layer of defence. Incorporating them into your routine can significantly reduce the likelihood of developing tooth decay. (That is definitely something to smile about).
#4 Fresh breath assurance:
Bad breath is often linked to bacteria in the mouth. Since interdental brushes effectively remove bacteria and debris, they play a crucial role in ensuring fresh breath. By maintaining a clean and bacteria-free environment between teeth, these brushes contribute to overall oral freshness.
#5 Orthodontic care:
For individuals with braces, interdental brushes are especially beneficial. Navigating the nooks and crannies around braces is challenging, but these flexible little dental heroes make the task more manageable; helping to keep the teeth and braces clean, preventing complications and ensuring a smoother orthodontic journey.
Incorporating interdental brushes into your routine | A how-to guide
As a general rule, most dentists recommend using an interdental brush once a day before your usual brushing, but you may also choose to use it twice a day or after meals especially if you have braces.
#1 Choose the right size:
They may all be small, but they do come in different sizes. Select interdental brushes that fit comfortably between your teeth. Sizes may vary, so experiment to find the most suitable option for your dental needs.
#2 Be gentle with your technique:
Use a gentle back-and-forth motion when inserting the brush between teeth and avoid forcing the brush, as this may cause injury to your gums.
#3 Be consistent:
Make interdental brushing a consistent part of your daily habits, ideally before or after your regular brushing session. Consistency is crucial for reaping the full benefits of these dental tools.
#4 Take them
Due to their size, interdental brushes are super travel-friendly. Pop them in your bag for daily on-the-go oral hygiene. This ensures you can maintain your routine anywhere.
Smile Shop to the rescue
In the journey towards optimal oral health, interdental brushes stand out as valuable allies, becoming a comprehensive component of your dental hygiene routine. Make them a staple in your daily routine, and experience the transformative impact on your long-term oral care.
Smile Shop - South Africa’s first online store - is dedicated to bringing you an ever-growing range of premium home dental care products and the very best in dental care, at the click of a button.