Our Guide to Interdental Cleaning

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Hi, I’m Tom from Toothpaste, and welcome to our guide to interdental cleaning.

The Limitations of Brushing

Brushing of the teeth and gums alone will never get them 100% clean. In order to get those really deep areas between the teeth, we need to add in something else.

Flossing: The Gold Standard

Now, the one that everyone has heard of, but never does enough of, is flossing. You can either use traditional floss, or some people find it a little bit easier to use flossettes. The technique is the same for both of them, but the flossettes can generally be a little bit less fiddly.

Correct Flossing Technique

When we are flossing, the aim is not just to clean the point at which the floss clicks between the teeth, it’s to clean the whole front surface and back surface of each tooth.

The Flossing Method

To get these areas, what we want to do is we want to click the floss down between the teeth. We then pull it to the front of the mouth, and we go up and down a few times, and then push to the back of the mouth, and go up and down a few times.

Comprehensive Flossing

We go all the way around the mouth, doing every gap that we can, rinsing it off as we go.

Interdental Brushes: An Alternative to Floss

Now, the alternative to flossing is what we call interdental brushes. These look a little bit like pipe cleaner brushes.

Using Interdental Brushes Properly

The best way to use these is to put a little bit of a bend to the side, and get them in a V or a U-shape.

The Technique

We use that V-shape bend to help it get deep in between the teeth. So we place it on the side of the tooth and rock it through the gaps between the teeth. If it’s easier, you can actually come from the inside as well.

Keeping Brushes Clean

In order to get the best result and keep them a little bit more hygienic, you can actually dip these in mouthwash as you go around, so you’re getting that antiseptic mouthwash right to the areas where it’s needed.

Reusability of Interdental Brushes

Now, remember, they’re not single-use, you can keep using them just until they get a bit bent and you can’t get them through anymore.

Addressing Bleeding and Tenderness

The important thing to remember with any interdental cleaning, as it is with brushing, is that any bleeding or tenderness is telling you that those areas are inflamed, so don’t back off. You’re not doing anything wrong. Be gentle but do linger on in those areas a little bit longer. And as you get into those over the next few days and weeks, that inflammation, that bleeding, that tenderness is all going to settle down.

For more information on any of these techniques, you can click on the links below or give us a call, book an appointment online, and you can come and get some more help from our friendly team.


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