Interdental brushes to clean between your teeth
Properly cleaning between the teeth involves more than brushing alone. It is important to also use dental floss, and in many cases, interdental brushes. This should be carried out at least once a day. Your regular toothbrush only cleans the inside, outside and biting surfaces of the tooth. Don't forget to clean the surfaces between the teeth, where bacteria can multiply if left undisturbed. The time of day flossing is carried out is not important and it is best to find a time when you are not in a rush and are able to clean thoroughly. What product you need is dependent on your individual needs and preferences. Ask you dental professional for advice.
Why interdental cleaning is so important?
Dental plaque can build up between the teeth where a toothbrush cannot get to.
Over time, this can lead to tooth decay, gum inflammation and bad breath. To prevent this from happening it is a good idea to use an interdental brush as part of your daily cleaning routine.
An interdental brush is a small brush specially designed to clean between your teeth, where a regular toothbrush does not reach. Daily use of an interdental brush, in addition to regular toothbrushing, is an easy and effective way to keep your gums and teeth fresh and healthy.
We recommend cleaning between your teeth every day, to keep your mouth fresh and healthy.
When you first start cleaning between your teeth, your gums may feel a bit sore and might bleed but do not stop because bleeding gums are often a sign of gum inflammation. If you do not notice an improvement within a few days, contact your dental professional.
What is an Interdental Brush?
We will begin with a basic definition; Interdental Brushes, also called interproximal brushes are oral hygiene instruments used to clean the interdental spaces (space between teeth, brackets, bridges or implants). Their shape is usually cylindrical and much smaller than a normal toothbrush.
Indications for interdental brushes
Any patient who cannot completely remove residues with a conventional toothbrush should use the interdental brush to control the formation of plaque on the teeth, especially people with:
- Open Interdental spaces
- Diseases of the periimplant, gingivitis and halitosis.
- Orthodontic treatment
- Furkish areas
- Edentulous Gaps
How to choose an interdental brush?
There are interdental space meters that determine the interdental space by color. This helps you determine what type of toothbrush should be used and where. The key is that the brush fits perfectly between the teeth or spaces without forcing it. You can start by trying the ultrafine interdental brush.
The following should also be taken into account:
- Ergonomic design for a good grip.
- Small and comfortable head that allows to reach the most difficult areas.
- Soft bristles so that they do not cause damage to gums or enamel.
They also vary in shape:
- Conic (pine-shaped): Especially for the hygiene of implants and around orthodontic appliances.
- Straight or cylindrical: Special for lingual surfaces and spaces between the teeth..
- Thin: Easily adapts to small spaces.
- Ultrathin: For very narrow interdental spaces.
And why not? There is also the electric interdental brush for manual use.
Picking the right size
Interdental brushes come in many different sizes, and it can be difficult to know which one is most suitable for your mouth. This depends on the tightness of your teeth. If they are very tight use floss or an interdental pick with a very small head. If this isn’t the case, then it is mostly trial and error - look out for sample packs or ask your hygienist. You may need more than one size depending on your interdental spaces. The head should fit comfortably, but snuggly, between your teeth as this will ensure maximum plaque removal. Never force the interdental in, go down a size instead.
For the best advice, ask a dental professional for their recommendation. In the meantime, here are a few tips to get you started....
- Look in the mirror and insert the brush between the teeth, close to the gums. Start with the smallest size and work up until the brush bristles touch the tooth surface and the gum tissue.
- The brush should have a snug fit but the wire, although plastic coated, should not touch the sides of the teeth or the gums. Never force the brush into a space.
- Once inserted, move the interdental brush to its full length back and forth about 2-3 times. Make sure to clean all the spaces between the teeth once a day.
- You are likely to need two-three different sizes, or the combination of one or two brushes and floss – it all depends on the spaces between the teeth, which normally vary throughout the mouth.
How to use interdental brushes?
To get the most out of interdental cleaning is all about the correct technique. The good news is that using interdental brushes is relatively easy to pick-up. Once mastered, it is a healthy habit that will last a lifetime.
Use a straight interdental brush between the front teeth
Insert the brush gently between the teeth. Do not force the brush into a space; work it in gently or choose a smaller size. Move the interdental brush full length back and forth a few times.
If using a small interdental brush on the back teeth
If using a small interdental brush you can curve the soft neck slightly. By adding pressure with your finger, it makes it easier to reach between the back teeth. Or try a long handled interdental brush.
If using a bigger interdental brush on the back teeth
When using interdental brushes of a larger size, access between the back teeth may be improved if you slightly curve the wire. The interdental brush will last longer if you do not straighten or bend the brush at another angle.
Which interdental brushes or picks are best for me?
This depends on your interdental spaces, the sensitivity of your gums and teeth as well as personal preference.
How often should I perform interdental cleaning?
You should clean between your teeth at least once a day, morning or evening. Most people prefer the evening, before going to bed.
Do I need to floss and use interdental brushes?
The most comprehensive solution would be to use both floss and interdental brushes. But of course, this isn’t possible for everyone. People with very tight interdental spaces might only be able to use floss. Others might prefer the ease of use and effectiveness of brushes and rubber picks.
How long do interdental brushes and picks last?
If you look after your brushes properly, they can be used for up to one week. Make sure you always let them air dry standing upright to prevent the growth of bacteria. Rubber interdental picks, however, are single use.
How to clean interdental brushes?
There is no need to clean them, just make sure you rinse after use and let them air dry standing upright to prevent the growth of bacteria. Remember, interdental brushes can be used for up to one week while interdental picks are single use.
What if I experience pain or bleeding when I clean between my teeth?
Light bleeding and/or discomfort can be quite common if you don’t clean between your teeth very often. It doesn’t mean that your mouth is unhealthy, just that you need to remove the plaque that is irritating your gums! Make sure you get into the habit of daily interdental cleaning. If the bleeding and pain don’t subside you should consider making an appointment with your oral health practitioner.
What is interdental papilla?
Interdental papilla is the gum between your teeth. It protects the roots of your teeth and prevents food from getting stuck between your teeth. These small sections of gum tissue are the ones that benefit most from interdental cleaning as they are the most susceptible to gingivitis and recession.
How often do you change the brush?
When you see a strong-wearing filament it's time to change it, but it can be a one-time use if you wish. There are spare parts for interdental brush handles and holders.
How to take care of the interdental brushes?
Like toothbrushes Toothbrushes interdental brushes are washed with water and reused until the bristles are deteriorated. Some of them have a cover, which allows them to keep their shape and hygiene longer.