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I know its great for your teeth, gums and all round mouth hygiene but I really don't enjoy flossing. I find it uncomfortable, a bit of a chore and sometimes end up with bleeding gums when I've gone at it a little aggressively. I have tried so many different ranges from the boxed strings to the little disposable sword types but have never found one that I would bother to use every day. I would find that once I had managed to force the floss in between some of my very close together teeth it was nigh on impossible to get it out again and I sometimes found it quite painful.
When I saw this electric flosser in Boots just before Christmas I thought "this is the answer". I love my braun electric toothbrush and could never go back to a manual brush as I was so used to the results so presumed this would be a similar product for me.
The Power Whitening Flosser is around the same size as an electric toothbrush but the head is more angled and instead of a brush head there is a little thin tip type end on it with a little white ball protruding from the end.
The tip is mint flavoured and boasts a special whitening agent for brightening the areas between your teeth. The claim is that you can floss and brighten your teeth at the same time.
The marketing blurb tells us that "Waterpik® Power Flossers are clinically proven as effective as string floss plus they reduce bleeding gums, inflammation and plaque. Over 80% of the participants in a recent study preferred the Waterpik® Power Flosser to string floss".
You can see why I was tempted.
- - To use - -
I couldn't wait to get it home and try it, once removed from the packaging it was ready to go, the battery and head were already inserted and a little packet containing 15 spare whitening tips was enclosed. It was easy to use without delving into the instructions, simply press the button and begin to use between the edges of your teeth. I simply placed the end of the tip between each of my teeth running it up and back down to the gumline.
You could feel the 10,000 strokes per minute rubbing against the edges of your teeth but it wasn't uncomfortable until you reached the gum. Even then it was more tickly than uncomfortable.
I was surprised that the little tip was too thick to actually fit between the teeth the way that floss does. It just rubbed along the front of the tooth edge. I tried to find a way to get the flosser to clean the back of the teeth but it was just too awkward to use it in a manner which actually got to the correct areas. It was also quite difficult to get a good angle on the teeth towards the back on each side. My teeth at the front are really jammed in and at the bottom front there is a slight overlap there was no way at all of getting the flosser through even though with a bit of brute force normal floss can be used.
After using it for the first time I tried to find some information on when the tip should be replaced. I searched the packaging and instructions and was none the wiser. The tip became more bent and the little ball on top disintegrated so I did replace it but how bad was it supposed to get before this is necessary should be printed somewhere.
- - The Claims - -
The manufacturers claim that this little gizmo:-
Removes plaque from above and below the gumline
That the flexible nylon tip slips easily between teeth and is gentle enough to use every day
- - Did it work - -
After the first use I was disappointed, my teeth didn't look any better or feel any better and my mouth didn't feel any fresher. Maybe it takes a while to show results I thought and continued to use it over the following few weeks. It did set me back £15.00 after all I wasn't going to give up without giving it a thorough trial.
I continued using it and admit it's a great idea but there is something wrong with the design. The angle and length of the shaft doesn't let you get at the back teeth or behind any teeth and the tip is too wide to get between a number of my front teeth.
I believe it is doing a small amount of good in cleaning the areas between the front of the teeth due to the 10,000 revolutions per minute but as its not going between the teeth you are not getting as good a deep clean as you would with manual floss.
I am very disappointed with this product and unfortunately much as I would like it to be a winner and basically anything that saves time and energy and works is a winner in my book, this just didn't work. I had really been rooting for it as I do find manual flossing time consuming, painful and easily avoided so I gave it every chance and encouraged it greatly to work.
- - Would I buy it again - -
Absolutely not. I tried it this way and that, going in from the front, trying to go in from the back, moving it fast and slow trying to push past any resistance but I just didn't get the satisfaction I was hoping for because it was too wide for me. (Yes I am still reviewing the flosser).
As I've spent my money I will continue to use it until the 15 tips are finished but I will not be throwing good money after bad by continuing to buy packs of replacement tips.
Warning - Do not allow children under 12 to use unsupervised.