Get with the times & stop using toothpicks

Fossils dating back roughly 1.8 million years show evidence of our cavemen ancestors using toothpicks to clean their teeth. Most of us have moved on since then but some people are still sticking to this stone age technique. If you’re still in the habit of poking your teeth with sharp bits of wood, here’s why you should consider updating your oral care routine.

In fairness, if the teeth were still attached to the skulls, it means the toothpicks probably did the job well enough at the time.

Toothpicks are unsanitary

Given that toothpicks are designed to get in between your teeth or just below your gumline, you need to be absolutely sure that they’re germ free in advance. But it’s pretty rare to see sterilised toothpicks and even worse, they’re usually in a communal tub at a bar or restaurant. It’s likely that someone has touched every one of those sticks before you got to them or worse still, used them and returned to the pot! You really want to avoid sticking any of them in your mouth.

Toothpicks break easily

Toothpicks are typically made from cheap disposable material which is prone to snapping and splintering. The last thing you need when you’re trying to dislodge a bit of food from your mouth is for the stick to snap and leave one or two sharp bits of wood stuck in your gums.

Toothpicks can damage teeth, crowns and fillings

Those caveman fossils we mentioned earlier had clear grooves on the teeth showing where picks had been used. Repeated use of toothpicks can wear away protective enamel causing the root to become exposed or even cause dental work like fillings to become dislodged, potentially resulting in pain and some hefty dental bills.

What to use instead of a toothpick?

Dentists used to suggest cleaning between your teeth with dental floss but environmental and safety concerns mean this is far less recommended these days. The best tools for the job now are a cleansing mouthwash or dedicated water flosser. Both of these will gently clean around the teeth and gums without any of the risks involved with dirty bits of sharp wood.

The best way to clean between teeth

The absolute best way we’ve found to clean between teeth is to combine your water flosser with a flosser-friendly mouthwash like our Dr Denti Mouthwash Tablets. The tablets dissolve directly in the water tank allowing you to direct the mouthwash exactly where it’s needed while also cleaning out the inside of the flosser and keeping it fresh for next time.

Our Dr Denti Mouthwash Tablets are used in hospitals and dental practices in countries around the world on a daily basis. While medical professionals can buy them in bulk, they’re now on offer them in convenient home-use tubes from pharmacies and general stores. The tablets are certified as 99.9% effective against Covid-19 and are an easy, cost-effective way to upgrade your oral care at home. For more information on where to buy Dr Denti products, please contact us at or call us on 01474 560 618.