Have you ever wondered what your hygienist is doing with that pokey little ruler when they tell you they’re “looking at your gum health?” If so, you're not alone!
What the hygienist is actually doing is measuring the vital structures that keep your teeth in place. That space is known to be healthy when it measures between one and three millimeters deep. However, once we start to see a depth of four or more millimeters that is a sign of onset gingivitis and possible periodontal disease.
So how do I keep my gums healthy & in the 1-3mm range?
With traditional floss, a patient can only reach into those small, healthy 1-3 mm spaces when flossing properly. While that's great for many of our patients, we often see patients who can't stand flossing or who have pocket depths deeper than the 1-3mm range that struggle to maintain proper gum health.
Once those deeper pockets develop and gingivitis or periodontal disease are present it makes it even harder to maintain proper oral health with string floss. You could be the best string flosser in the world, but unfortunately despite all your hard work, plaque bacteria will remain deep beneath the gumline.
Luckily there's a solution for all this and more with the use of a WaterPik®. It flushes water down to the base of the tissues forcing bacteria out and creating an environment to battle the growth of new bacteria. This is EXTREMELY important from the dental perspective as any bacteria below the gumline can lead to bone loss.
My hygienist said my gums were healthy is the WaterPik® still beneficial?
For patients that aren’t showing any signs of gingivitis or periodontal disease, the Waterpik is a great way to prevent these issues in the future. Everyone is at risk of developing gum disease, so why not take an easy step to prevent this from happening! A couple of examples of those who may be at a higher risk of developing gum issues are patients with traditional wire braces, diabetes, implants, bridges, non-flossers, and many more.
While the Waterpik does take some practice getting used to, this tool will really become your best friend when used properly! Be sure to ask our clinical staff for a demonstration at your next visit and stay tuned for instructional videos.