The Best Flossing Tools

Traditional floss, waxed or unwaxed, is a must for every oral health nut’s cabinet. But if you want even more of a clean, fresh feeling, try adding one of these dental tools to your toolkit.

Waterpik Water Flosser

High-pressured water flossers shoot a stream of water between your teeth to dislodge any food particles or plaque leftover after flossing. They also gently massage your gums to improve circulation. Water flossers are not a replacement for traditional flossing, but if you use a water flosser in conjunction with regular flossing, you’re in for a whole host of oral health benefits!

Air Flossers

Air flossers are a lot like water flossers, but they use high-pressured air to blow away any plaque or food particles you may have missed after flossing and brushing. Is one better than the other? While one study showed that Waterpiks removed more plaque, we still believe if you’re more likely to use an air flosser over a Waterpik, then use the air flosser. The extra benefit of either is great!

Tongue Scrapers & Oral Rinses

While they aren’t flossers, tongue scrapers are great for removing foul-smelling bacteria that cause bad breath. Just be sure to rinse and wash your tongue scraper before and after you use it to prevent spreading that bacteria back into your mouth. Scrape the entire top and sides of your tongue, not just down the center.

Use an oral rinse or mouth wash after flossing to strengthen your enamel, freshen your breath, or even just to finish of a great round of brushing, flossing, and tongue scraping!

Want some other suggestions for great dental tools that you can use at home? Let us know and we’ll recommend a few others at your next appointment! Call us today to book your next appointment or teeth cleaning, or conveniently book online.

Should I See an Invisalign Dentist or an Orthodontist?

If you are considering teeth straightening options, you might be wondering if aligner therapy would be a possibility or if you need to see an orthodontist for traditional braces instead. North Richland Hills Dentistry is pleased to offer Invisalign® therapy, and Dr. Desai would be happy to schedule a consultation with you to discuss your individual needs. Many people find that Invisalign is a great choice for them, but if you're unsure, here are some things to consider when deciding between an Invisalign dentist and an orthodontist.

The Severity of Your Condition

The first thing to consider is what type of straightening your teeth require. If you have mild to moderate spacing, crowding, or an overbite or underbite, you are likely a great candidate for Invisalign. However, if you have canines or molars that need to be rotated or teeth that need to be moved vertically, it's likely that this more involved procedure may require seeing an orthodontist for traditional metal braces that can make more drastic changes to the position of your teeth.

Seeing Your Normal Dentist

If you know that your teeth are a good candidate for Invisalign therapy, you will appreciate the fact that you don't need to see a separate orthodontist. Dr. Desai can treat you for the entire process. Seeing your regular dentist ensures that your treatment takes your dental history into consideration and that your recommendation is the best treatment option for your specific needs.

The Aesthetic of Your Braces

While braces have made great cosmetic strides over the years and there are clear and enamel-colored ones available, most people still prefer the clear, nearly invisible look of aligner trays. They are nearly undetectable unless someone is looking very closely at your teeth. Plus they help you retain the confidence in your smile that is often lost with the look of traditional metal braces.

Do You Want to Remove Them?

Another major advantage of Invisalign is that they can be removed for short periods of time, so you can eat meals and brush and floss as you normally would. Traditional braces are notorious for getting sticky candy or gum caught in them, for brackets breaking on hard foods, and for generally making brushing and flossing much more time consuming. Aligner trays pop out easily and can be cleaned and soaked separately, and you'll never have to worry about scheduling emergency appointments to fix broken wires or brackets.

Appointment Schedule

In general, aligner therapy is used for shorter periods of time than braces, and you may only need to wear them for a few months to get the results that you need. You'll change your aligner trays every two weeks and visit Dr. Desai every four to six weeks. Braces that are fitted by an orthodontist require more maintenance and a larger number of regular visits for tightening wires and replacing brackets and bands. Invisalign frees you from feeling like you live at the dentist's office while still effectively straightening your teeth.

Dr. Desai is very pleased to offer Invisalign therapy at North Richland Hills Dentistry, and she prides herself on offering treatments that help her patients to achieve healthy, confident smiles. If you are interested in learning more about aligner therapy and how it might be a good option for you, contact us today.