If you using traditional string floss and feel like you are making a completet mess of it, your not alone.
In fact, most people find the act of using string floss so difficult that they completely skip flossing.
And are completely unaware of how dangerous that could be to their oral health.
You simply cannot do without flossing, so if you find the string a handful, why not explore other options?
One of the easiest and most convenient methods is actually flossing with floss picks.
What are floss picks?
Floss picks are a small piece of plastic, with a small handle and a bridge that holds a small piece of string floss between its beaks. So in other words, you are using traditional string floss, but with a much simpler way of handling.
Is flossing with floss picks effective?
Well, considering you are using traditional string floss held by a plastic frame, the answer is definitely: YES.
No one could argue the benefit and efficiency of string floss, as well as its convenience and availability. But not everyone finds it easy to use. Which is why floss picks were created to provide a very simple way of using the good ole string.
Advantages of using floss picks
Easy to use
That goes without saying. It is much simpler to handle the small plastic frame with the tiny piece of string than to handle a few centimeters of string wrapped around your fingers.
It also provides great accessibility and reaches the depths of the mouth with extreme ease. Which is great for people with limited dexterity such as children, the elderly and people with Parkinsons disease.
Available, cheap and convenient
Perhaps string floss is not the most efficient method of flossing, especially with the up rise of new trends of oral care such as air flossers and water flossers. But string floss still has the advantage of being readily available everywhere as well as being portable unlike those new devices.
The same goes for floss picks, where you can very easily buy a pack at the local drug store or convenience store. If you decide to spend a night away from home, simply slip it in your overnight bag.
Finally, in comparison to other methods (with the exception of string floss) it is the cheapest means of flossing on the market today.
Sold in packs
Again unlike water flossers and air flossers, floss picks are sold in packs of 5 or 10 pieces. Meaning that a single pack could last quite a while, without the need for a supply run every couple of days.
Comes in all shapes and sizes
In this aspect it is very similar to another popular method of flossing, and that is interdental brushes. Floss picks come in a variety of shapes, with small and large handles, short and long frames. The handles are easy grip for children and some are even electric powered.
Which means they not only floss with extreme efficiency, but massage the gums in the process as well.
Much less harmful
Most people use string floss all wrong. They force it very heavily between the very tight contacts of the teeth and they end up hurting and injuring the gums in the process.
With floss picks, this danger can be avoided since the small and highly taut piece of string between the plastic horns finds its way easily and without force between the teeth. So you would not expect the string to come in contact with the gums so heavily and no damage will be done.
Not only that, but when you hold that piece of string in your fingers, you are squeezing your skin as well as the circulation in your fingers. Which may cause some tingling sensation and skin burns later on. When flossing with floss picks this does not happen.
Disadvantages of using floss picks
So as you can see, flossing with floss picks certainly holds a distinct advantage. However, it is not for everyone and certainly not devoid of the following flaws.
Not as effective
When comparing floss picks to other methods in terms of cleaning efficiency, you may find it a bit wanting. Studies have shown that it is not as effective as traditional string floss, and certainly not as effective as water flossers and air flossers.
Floss picks have a short lifespan. In fact, for an effective flossing session, you could end up using more than one floss pick from the pack.
You might be wondering can you reuse floss picks, we certainly don’t recommend that. You’ll just be spreading bacteria around your mouth.
So this would actually make floss picks in the long run not the most cost effective option.
But fear not, the modern design has made some floss picks reusable. Meaning that if you do select the proper design and brand, you could save a few bucks.
Cannot be used with braces
Thinking of using floss picks for braces? Well think again. Since a floss pick is a piece of string held between two plastic prongs, which means it is quite rigid. While traditional string floss is not a blessing when it comes to braces and bridges, but with a certain degree of skill, it could be used with acceptable efficiency.
That is not true for floss picks, because you cannot bend the plastic handle.
Flossing with floss picks verdict
In short, there is no definite right or wrong when it comes to flossing vs floss picks. You just have to do at least one method regularly.
There is a wide variety of ways by which you can floss and all you have to do is select the one that suits you the most. If flossing with floss picks is what gets the job done for you, then by all means, go for it.