What is a Water Pick? (Do I need one)

Last Updated on

UPDATED 28-11-18

Water picks sometimes called “oral irrigators,” make an excellent addition to your regular home care regimen of brushing and flossing. They are especially helpful to those who suffer from periodontal disease and those patients who are undergoing orthodontic treatment with full-bracketed braces.

waterpik device

What are the Benefits of a Water Pick?

Water picks use powerful tiny bursts of water to dislodge

  1. Food scraps
  2. Bacteria,
  3. Other debris nestled in the crevices of your mouth.

Children undergoing orthodontic treatment may find using a water pick is beneficial if their toothbrush bristles tend to get caught on their wires or brackets. When you use a water pick, you’re not only dislodging any particles or debris and bacteria you might have missed when brushing, you are also gently massaging the gums. This helps to promote blood flow in the gums and keeps them healthy.


Are Waterpiks as effective as flossing?

While water picks are an excellent addition to your daily fight against Gingivitis and other periodontal diseases, they are incapable of fully removing plaque, which is why Dr. Kyle Childers and our team at Childers Orthodontics want to remind you to keep brushing and flossing every day.




If you have sensitive teeth or gums and find it uncomfortable to floss daily, water picks are a good alternative to reduce discomfort, while effectively cleaning between teeth. Diabetics sometimes prefer water picks to flossing because they don’t cause bleeding of the gums, which can be a problem with floss. If you have a permanent bridge, crowns, or other dental restoration, you may find that a water pick helps you keep the area around the restorations clean.

So how do you choose the right water pick?

Finally, water picks are available for home or portable use. The home versions tend to be larger and use standard electrical outlets while portable models use batteries. Aside from the size difference, they work in the same manner, both using pulsating water streams. A more crucial difference between water picks is the ability to adjust the pressure. Most home models will let you choose from several pressure settings, depending on how sensitive your teeth and gums are. Most portable models have only one pressure setting.

Accordingly, if you want to use mouthwash or a dental rinse in your water pick, check the label first; some models suggest using water only. Please give us a call or visit us at our Benton, Harrisburg or Herrin, IL office if you have any questions about water picks. Dr. Childers is more than happy to answer your questions.

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What is a Water Pick? (Do I need one)

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