Guide to Interdental Cleaning

There’s nothing quite like the deep clean feel when you’ve been to the dentist for a hygiene treatment. But how can you keep your mouth healthy between appointments? Brushing alone only reaches up to 60% of the surface of your teeth – typically the front, back and biting surfaces of your teeth that are easily reached by a toothbrush. The remaining 40% are the surfaces between teeth and just below the gumline which can trap bacteria and food debris throughout the day. You can reach these areas with interdental cleaning, which should be a part of your daily oral hygiene routine.

What is interdental cleaning?

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Interdental cleaning is the process of cleaning the areas between your teeth and gums and is an important part of keeping your mouth clean and healthy. Sticky bacteria (otherwise known as plaque) builds up in these hard-to-reach areas and can cause inflammation, leading to more serious problems such as gum disease and tooth decay, which is a leading cause of tooth loss. We advise that you use interdental tools to clean your teeth once a day to remove this bacteria and help reduce the risk of problems further down the line.


How do you clean interdentally?

Interdental brushes are small bristle-head tools. You can remove trapped bacteria by pushing the brush between your teeth in a back and forth motion. You can also use floss to reach between the smallest of gaps between your teeth, ensuring your mouth is completely clean and healthy, as well as reducing the risk of bad breath.


Choosing the right interdental brush for you

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Interdental brushes come in a range of sizes so you can choose the right one for you. We stock interdental tools at our practice, so take a look next time you’re in for an appointment.


You may find you use a selection of sizes as the spaces between your teeth can differ, so try them out first. It should fit tightly between teeth, but not be uncomfortable. You may find that your gums are a little sore after the first few uses, and you may even bleed a little. This should subside after 1-2 weeks of interdental cleaning as your gums become less inflamed. If bleeding continues beyond this point, consult your dentist as this may be a sign of a more serious problem such as Periodontal Disease.



At Penryn Dental Practice we are committed to a preventive approach to dental health. Speak to us today to find out more about how regular appointments with our experienced dentists and hygienists can help you enjoy a beautiful smile and great oral health.


Want to know more? Take a look at our hygiene treatments page for more information on how to maintain your perfect smile.