Did you know that toothpicks were invented long before even the very first forms of modern toothpastes and toothbrushes? The simple design of a toothpick makes it super easy to clean teeth or remove objects that are stuck between them.
However, with today’s technology and advancements, relying on a toothpick just isn’t going to cut it to maintain great oral health—nor are they as safe for your smile as you may have thought. Although they are useful if there are no other tools available to you, your dentist says that you should only use a toothpick if you’re faced with that tiny stick as your last option.
The Dangers of Using Toothpicks on Your Teeth
When toothpicks are used correctly, they can be effective at removing dislodged food particles from your chewing surfaces and between the tight spots of your teeth. But, it’s still important to understand what you’re exposing your smile to. The rough texture of toothpicks can:
- Scrape away at the protective layer of your teeth—the enamel.
- Traumatize sensitive gum tissues, causing gum recession.
- Cause soft tissue injuries like lacerations and bleeding.
- Damage exposed teeth roots from existing gum recession.
Keeping Your Teeth Clean Without Relying on Toothpicks
Again, toothpicks aren’t the absolute worst way to remove dental debris from your mouth, but there are better choices for your smile. If you happen to have food stuck in your teeth at a restaurant, it’s not the worst idea to remove it with a toothpick.
You can also always try rinsing your mouth with water in a restroom. Swishing a liquid around your mouth is a much safer way to remove a stuck item from between your teeth. Water is also natural antibacterial rinse that can help neutralize bad dental bacteria that may be residing in your mouth while at the same time removing harmful debris.
If you can, try carrying floss in your purse, wallet, or car for these random cases. This way, you’ll always have a safer alternative at your disposal rather than being forced to use a toothpick on your teeth.
While toothpicks may seem cool in the movies, when it comes to cleaning your teeth, be sure to only used tried and true tools.
Meet Your Livonia Dentists
Our team of dentists provides dental care for any age and any situation. If an item was to become lodged between your teeth, your dental team at Livonia Dental Group will be happy to help you in your time of need. Our highly trained experts can help you during a scheduled appointment at our Livonia dental practice. Call (734) 799-0686 to book your next dental visit with our dental team.