Underwood (07) 3219 9806 Calamvale (07) 3273 3220

How to get your teeth gaps cleaner with interdental brushes

Restorative dentistry addresses both the aesthetics and functionality of your teeth, ensuring each aspect of your oral health is comprehensively cared for. Not only can restorative treatment options like veneers, inlays, onlays and crowns enhance the look of your smile, they can also represent major improvements to your oral well-being. The boost this gives your self confidence and your overall health can genuinely revitalise you, giving you greater zest for life.

What are interdental brushes?

Interdental brushes, sometimes referred to as interproximal brushes, are slender, disposable tools with fine bristles designed to fit between your teeth. They come in various sizes to accommodate the different gaps between teeth. Interdental brushes remove food particles, plaque and bacteria accumulating in these spaces, contributing to better oral health.

How do interdental brushes work?

Interdental brushes have a slender design with small, bristled heads held on a wire or handle. The bristles are specifically designed to fit between the teeth. They can effectively remove food particles and plaque from these tight spaces when used correctly. Interdental brushes help prevent gum disease, tooth decay and bad breath through effective cleaning between the teeth.

Common types of interdental brushes

Interdental brushes come in various shapes, sizes and designs to accommodate individual preferences and specific needs. Some of the common types include:

Tapered brushes: These brushes are ideal for spaces with varying gap sizes, as their conical shape can adapt to different areas of your mouth.

Straight brushes: Straight interdental brushes work well for spaces with a consistent size between teeth.

Angled brushes: They are designed to access hard-to-reach areas, making them suitable for back teeth cleaning.

Soft or firm bristles: Interdental brushes come with both soft or firm bristles, allowing you to choose the one that feels most comfortable for your gums and teeth.

Benefits of using interdental brushes

  • Effective plaque removal: Interdental brushes are highly effective at removing plaque from between the teeth, where it tends to accumulate.
  • Preventing gum disease: Regular use of interdental brushes can help prevent gum disease by keeping the interdental areas clean and healthy.
  • Reducing tooth decay: These brushes help remove food particles and bacteria from tight spaces, reducing the risk of cavities.
  • Fresh breath: Cleaning between teeth can contribute to fresher breath by eliminating the bacteria responsible for bad breath.

How to use interdental brushes

  • Select the right size: Choose an interdental brush size that fits comfortably between your teeth without forcing it.
  • Gentle insertion: Insert the brush gently between your teeth, avoiding any forceful actions to prevent damage to your gums or teeth.
  • Back-and-forth motion: Use a back-and-forth brushing motion to clean the spaces between your teeth. A single pass is often sufficient to remove debris.
  • Rinse: After use, rinse the brush thoroughly to maintain cleanliness and hygiene.
  • Replace: If your interdental brush comes with a cap, replace it for hygiene purposes. Additionally, replace the brush when the bristles are worn or the wire is bent.
interdental brushes

Where can I purchase interdental brushes?

Interdental brushes are readily available and can be purchased from different sources, making it easy to incorporate them into your daily oral hygiene routine. Here are some common online sites where you can find interdental brushes:

Common FAQs about interdental brushes

Do interdental brushes hurt or cause bleeding?

When you first start using interdental brushes, your gums may feel tender and slightly bleed as you remove accumulated plaque. While this is normal at the beginning, as your gums become healthier with regular use, this small amount of bleeding should decrease. Get personalised guidance on brushing by bringing your particular type of interdental brush to your oral health checkup and discuss your technique with your dental professional.

How often should I use interdental brushes?

Using interdental brushes at least once a day before brushing your teeth is recommended. Incorporate them into your daily oral hygiene routine for the best results.

Can interdental brushes replace flossing?

While interdental brushes are effective at cleaning between teeth, they are not a complete replacement for flossing. Floss can reach even tighter spaces and should be used in conjunction with interdental brushes for comprehensive cleaning.

Can children use interdental brushes?

Interdental cleaning is generally not recommended for children until all their permanent teeth have fully emerged. Children can use interdental brushes under professional supervision if their dentist or hygienist recommends it.

Can I reuse interdental brushes?

Yes, you can reuse interdental brushes several times. Rinse them after each use and replace them when the bristles wear out or the wire becomes bent.

How do I choose the right interdental brush size?

Start with the smallest size and work your way up until you find the brush that comfortably fits your interdental spaces without forcing it.

Do interdental brushes work for people with braces or dental appliances?

Yes, interdental brushes are valuable for individuals with braces or dental appliances. They can help clean around brackets, wires and other components that make traditional flossing difficult.

Can interdental brushes be used on dental implants?

Interdental brushes are safe and effective for cleaning around dental implants. However, using them gently is essential to avoid damaging the implant or the surrounding tissues.

Should I consult a dental professional before using interdental brushes?

It’s a good idea to consult your dentist or dental hygienist for personalised recommendations on interdental brush sizes and usage, especially if you have specific dental conditions or concerns.

Girl cleaning teeth

Consider using interdental brushes for thorough oral care

Interdental brushes are essential tools for maintaining oral health by effectively cleaning between your teeth. They offer a convenient solution for removing plaque and preventing dental problems.

Incorporating interdental brushes into your daily routine can contribute to healthier gums, fewer cavities and fresher breath. So remember to clean between your teeth to keep your smile bright and your oral health impeccable.