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We all know how important healthy teeth and gums are but if like me you have found the traditional dental floss string difficult to use and generally a bit ineffective then I would really recommend these. Basically you buy these little brushes which come in packs of various numbers and various sizes. You need to choose the size of the brush according to the size of the gaps between your teeth. What these brushes are really good for is both removing food that may be stuck between your teeth but also cleaning the gums and preventing plaque build up. My gums used to bleed occasionally however with regular use of these brushes they have become much healthier and less inflamed because of removing the plaque. The dentist was really pleased with the improvement when I next wen to see him. You do need to buy a handle with these brush heads but that can be reused as you simple change the brush heads. The brushes themselves last quite a while but obviously you do need to change them regularly to ensure that they remain effective. However, they are really not that expensive in the first place and I do believe that spending a little bit to prevent long term problems is a good investment. All in all I would recommend these as an effective and easy way to clean in between teeth which is vital for healthy teeth and gums.
I'm currently reading "Genetics for Dummies" and it has been a real eye-opener about the way in which we inherit our characteristics from our parents. It's a wonder it works at all but work it clearly does. Oh, that we could influence which features we get from which parent but sadly it just doesn't work like that, to quote the man [not] at Nationwide. If I could have chosen I most certainly wouldn't have chosen my mother's dental genes but, as I said, you get no choice in the matter. So, as you will gather, my teeth are not my best feature. I first realised that I'd drawn the short straw in my teens. Mind you, some of my problems were self-inflicted: a cycling accident removed three top front teeth and fractured my skull into the bargain. It could have been worse though: it should have been five teeth that I knocked out but one had never grown at all and the other one on the other side grew as little more than a matchstick, which the dentist took out anyway. Over the years I've had a lot of work done on my teeth. Fortunately, although I am not NHS with my local dentist, he does a very good job and doesn't charge the Earth. Nevertheless there are some things which are simply inevitable as we get older: things like receding gums make cleaning your teeth ever harder and is something about which your dentist can do nothing. As well as cleaning your teeth regularly (I use an electric toothbrush I've reviewed here) you are also strongly recommended by dentists and dental hygienists to floss between your teeth as well. Now, I've never been able to get the hang of flossing and in any case it does seem to rely upon starting with a decent set of pegs, with even gaps between them. This lets me out! I am aware, though, that the sort of gaps I have between my teeth act as magnets for food debris and getting rid of this is not just important from a mouth odour point of view but also from the potential it has for causing gum disease. So, what alternatives are there to flossing tape that would work? The solution for me seems to be Curaprox Interdental Brushes. These brushes look like miniature versions of the ones that are used to clean gun barrels. They're about 1cm long, not including the plastic tip and come in various widths from about .6mm radius upwards. Each size has a different coloured handle so as to easily distinguish them: the .6mm size is turquoise whilst the .8mm size is pink, for instance. There is also a conical brush with an orange tip. If you have good teeth, with narrow gaps then the .6mm size is probably the one for you. I use a combination of the .8mm and the conical brushes. The little plastic tip is actually just the connector to enable you to attach the brush either to the plastic finger-tip handle that comes with each pack of 5. I find I cannot use these so I have an aluminium handle of about normal toothbrush length, into which the brush fits. With this I find it far easier to reach the rear teeth. There is also a double-ended version for those who regularly use two different brushes and don't want the bother of changing them over every time they use them. I find the brushes last about a month in regular use. What normally happens is that the brush bit breaks off from the plastic tip, due to the central wire getting repeatedly bent in use. A replacement pack of brushes costs around £4 whilst a long metal handle is about the same price but will probably last forever. I get mine from my dentist but you can almost certainly get them online although they don't seem to be available from the likes of Boots or Superdrug. The biggest challenge in using these brushes is working out where the gaps in your teeth are. I tend to brush from the outside in, that is, from the cheek side of the teeth, but I don't think it matters which way you do it. I also use a smear of toothpaste on the brush but, once again, I don't think that's essential. Regular use does, however, make a significant improvement both in the appearance of the teeth, especially the front ones, and in the apparent cleanliness of your mouth. The brushes remove debris that simply cannot be tackled with an normal toothbrush alone, electric or otherwise. Use does have to be regular, daily is recommended, so you do have to be determined to look after your teeth in order to spend the extra time it takes to brush with the Curaprox brushes as well as the normal toothbrush. The results are worth it though.
Curaprox / Brushes for between the teeth / Available in a range of colours and sizes /