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Water pick: use, types, advantages, and disadvantages

Water pick are the ultimate word in dental hygiene. The water jet device is used to remove plaque and food debris from hard-to-reach areas, ensuring optimal cleaning of teeth and interdental spaces. But what other advantages does the water pick offer and what else should you know about this miracle device? You can find out here.

Are water picks useful or not?

Whether a water pick is useful or not depends on the condition of your teeth. Especially for people who wear braces, bridges or implants, the water pick is a good addition for optimising oral hygiene. But the water pick also makes sense as an additional alternative to conventional cleaning with toothbrush and dental floss. This is because the devices reach even hard-to-reach areas of the interdental spaces with their water jet.

Water pick Pros and Cons

Water pick advantages:

  • Promote dental health by effectively removing dental deposits such as plaque

  • Prevention and risk minimisation of tooth decay and other infectious diseases

  • Water pick against tonsil stones - Gentle removal of lumps

  • Easy to use

  • Minimise/eliminate mouth odour

Water pick disadvantages:

  • Water picks do not replace daily tooth cleaning

  • Effective cleaning is strongly dependent on the individual device - Lower priced water picks can have an inadequate water jet strength

  • Risk of injury if the pressure setting is too high

  • Water picks should not be used by people with gum infections such as periodontitis and other dental diseases

Water pick vs dental floss - Which is better?

"And don't forget to floss!" Most of us have probably heard this sentence at some point during our regular check-ups at the dentist. But can a water pick also be used instead of dental floss for cleaning the interdental spaces?

Just like dental floss, water picks are also a useful practical aid for daily oral hygiene The water pick's adjustable water jet ensures that food residues and plaque are thoroughly removed. And when it comes to comfort and time savings, the water pick is the clear winner over dental floss. However, experts do not recommend replacing flossing with water picks. It merely offers an excellent addition to daily oral hygiene. This is because very stubborn particles such as tartar and plaque can only be removed by the mechanical friction of the floss.

Water picks - The right way to use them

Water picks should be used daily after brushing teeth The use of water picks is particularly recommended in the evening, as this is the time when the most plaque has accumulated and the food debris from the day is most effectively removed by the correct use of a water pick.

For correct use of the water pick, it is important to keep the water jet in the direction of the interdental spaces and along the gumline. Particularly for beginners, it is advisable to start with a device that contains several levels. This allows the teeth and gums to get used to the pressure and there is no risk of injury.

Cleaning the water pick

Water picks are best cleaned with specially designed cleaning agents. However, household remedies such as citric acid or vinegar are also common variants for decalcifying the water pick and removing dirt. The water tank, mouthpiece, and hose should be spotless and dried regularly after each use in order to thoroughly protect the device from mould.

When cleaning the water pick, make sure that no cleaning agents containing toxic or corrosive substances are used.

Water pick and retainers?

The use of a water pick is particularly suitable for those who wear retainers and offers a suitable alternative to dental floss or interdental brushes. Especially for wearers of fixed retainers, water picks can help to reach the interdental spaces that are not cleaned properly with conventional instruments.

Comparison of water picks

There are different types of water picks. The models range from electronic to mechanical and can basically be divided into two categories: fixed and mobile.

Fixed water picks

Fixed water picks, also called dental centres, are connected by a hose to a fixed pump station. The models usually have an extremely large water tank and have a very high cleaning performance due to their powerful water jet. The fixed water pick models are also extremely convenient, as they are about the size of a conventional electric toothbrush and are therefore easy to handle. The fixed models also have an advantage in terms of battery life, as they can be used at any time by connecting them to the mains. In the field of fixed water picks, the manufacturers Braun (Oral-B) and Waterpik in particular are pioneers.

Portable or mobile water picks

Mobile water picks have the advantage that they are not necessarily tied to the pump station during use. Accordingly, mobile water picks are perfect for travelling and can be placed anywhere you like. In terms of comfort, however, the portable devices are behind the fixed water picks due to the weight when the water tank is full. The capacity of the water tank to be filled is also only sufficient for one cleaning cycle, which is why constant refilling is necessary. Just like the water supply, the battery life is also limited.

Which is the best water pick?

According to Stiftung Warentest, the Waterpik WP-660 Ultra Professional is the best water pick. The fixed device is the clear test winner among the water picks due to the large water tank, the advanced pressure regulation system and a wide selection of attachments.

Which water pick do dentists recommend?

A clear recommendation regarding the right water pick should always be made by your respective dentist.

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