Dental water jets, also called oral irrigators, hydro flossers or water picks, are personal care devices designed to help you improve your oral health at home. Designed with a motor and pump, water jets spray pressurized, pulsating water from a reservoir, through the flosser tip and into your mouth, removing plaque, food particles and bacteria, and stimulating gum tissue. A water flosser is considered gentle and easy to use and can be particularly effective for gum disease, chronically bleeding gums, dry mouth, or simply removing food stuck in between your teeth. Additionally, water jets can be used safely, effectively and easily with braces, dental implants and other dental work.
Advantages of Using a Water Jet
Water flossing is not a replacement for brushing your teeth, or for string flossing, which is better at both removing plaque precisely at contact points between teeth and removing food trapped between the contacts. However, using a water jet on a regular basis may improve gum health and help prevent plaque buildup on teeth. It can also offer several other benefits, including reducing gingivitis, reducing gingival bleeding and reducing inflammation of the gums. Water jets get deeper into the gum pockets than string floss (around half way into the pocket), and actually expel subgingival bacteria, rather than just pushing it deeper into the pocket.
Water Jet Considerations
Many people find using a water jet to be much easier, faster and more effective than string flossing and prefer it because it they can avoid putting their hands into their mouth. However, most dentists recommend that water flossing be used in addition to — and not instead of — brushing with an electric toothbrush, and flossing with string floss. So you may want to select one of the Waterpik flossers, dental hygiene tools from Philips Sonicare, or a water jet manufactured by another company, to enhance your regular self-care oral hygiene routine.