The Best Dental Floss for Every Type of Patient—According to Dentists and Hygienists
Newsflash: all floss is not created equal. That’s why our doctors and hygienists have spent years testing out virtually every product out there, learning which products help our patients and their personalized needs because not everyone needs the same product. Here, our team lays out the best dental floss for every type of patient and mouth. We’re not paid by any companies to promote these products. We just want each of you to find what works best for your mouth and help you stay as healthy as possible. And c’mon, we’re dentists: we love floss.
But first, why do we need floss in the first place?
It’s simple—dentists all agree that patients who floss regularly have healthier gums. They have less bleeding, bone loss, and inflammation. Dr. Paul Katz sums it up nicely: “Over the years, I’ve frequently asked patients with healthy gums what they do to keep them so perfect. Besides visiting us at Dental Professionals, they all floss regularly! It didn’t matter so much which type of floss they used, it was the fact that they used it!” That said, different mouths can get an extra benefit being paired with the ideal floss. That’s what we aim to help you do here.
The 10 Best Dental Floss Choices for Every Purpose
1. The Hygienist Favorite Dental Floss: Cocofloss
Multiple hygienists on the Dental Professionals team raved about this product and use it themselves as their go-to floss at home. Made from coconut, the texture is thick and fibrous. Zhanna likes that it doesn’t shred and loves the variety of flavors, saying “it comes in mint, different fruit flavors, chocolate, and even gelato.” The team agrees that the flavors are pleasant but not overpowering. Daniella says Cocofloss is her “absolute favorite. I’ve tried several brands but always come back to Cocofloss.” Cocofloss offers subscriptions for easy refills. The only negatives mentioned were that due to the thickness, it can be difficult to use in very tight contacts between teeth, as well as that it is not easily found in stores. It’s also cruelty-, paraben-, SLS- and PFAS-free!
2. Classic-Brand Favorite: Johnson & Johnson Listerine Floss (formerly Reach Floss)
If one of our hygienist’s favorite floss wasn’t Cocofloss, then it was Listerine Floss, by Johnson and Johnson (formerly called Reach Dental Floss). Carrie, a Dental Professionals hygienist of 22 years, uses this as her personal floss, saying she feels “the lighter wax coating wipes plaque off better.” Ator, who’s been with our team for over 10 years as a hygienist, said of Listerine Floss: “I like how it stretches. It’s one of my favorites!”
3. The Best Dental Floss for Tight Contacts: Oral-B Glide Pro Health
Glide is a well-known floss for a reason—it easily slides between teeth due to a very smooth texture. It is effective at plaque removal, gently stimulates gums, and features a light layer of natural wax to help with grip.
4. The Best Dental Floss for Braces or Bridges: Superfloss
Superfloss is an essential tool for patients with traditional braces, bonded wire retainers, and/or bridges replacing missing teeth. Each piece of Superfloss has three different parts—a stiff end for easy threading, a thicker spongy section, and a section of “regular” floss. The pieces are pre-measured and come in multi-packs. We even use these in the office for these same patients—there really is nothing better!
5. Best Dental Gluten-Free & Vegan Floss: Boka Floss
Boka Floss is made with vegetable wax, as well as being PTFE-free (i.e. Teflon-free) and petroleum-free. Our hygienist Elizabeth loves it, saying it provides a “thorough, satisfying clean.” Similar to brands like Quip (which I don’t actually recommend) or Cocofloss, Boka offers subscriptions on top of one-time purchases so you never run out.
6. The Best Dental Floss for Overachievers: Dr. Tung’s Smart Floss
Italian-made Dr. Tung’s Smart Floss comes in a biodegradable container, is lightly waxed with vegetable and bee’s wax, and is gluten-, PTFE- and BPA-free. It even promises to remove up to 55% more plaque than regular waxed or PTFE flosses—we told you it was for overachievers. Dr. Jacobs notes that “internal studies on plaque removal differences between brands must be taken with a grain of salt, but Dr. Tung’s has been very effective for our patients who’ve tried it.”
7. The Best Clean Dental Floss: Risewell Floss
There are endless choices when one searches for natural or chemical-free flosses. These three (Boka, Dr. Tung and Risewell) flosses, however, have been researched and critically tested by our team, winning their approval. Risewell is especially unique as it offers a hydroxyapatite-infused dental floss, designed to help remineralize the surfaces between teeth, which is an important part of preventing tooth decay from dietary acid. It features vegan wax and is also PTFE- and petroleum-free.
8. The Best Soft Pick: The Humble Co. Floss Picks
For our patients who prefer soft picks, our hygienist Elizabeth recommends floss picks from The Humble Co. These picks are double threaded for better plaque removal, made of eco-friendly corn starch, and come in two shapes for better access.
9. Best for People Who Don’t Want to (or Can’t) Floss: The Hydro Floss Oral Irrigator
In our practice, we so strongly believe in the effectiveness of oral irrigators that ALL patients who undergo Perio 360 gum disease treatment are given one. Amazingly, we’ve also discovered that the significant number of patients who, for various reasons, just cannot integrate flossing into their daily routine almost unanimously like oral irrigators. Hydro Floss irrigators are what we primarily recommend, as they use magnets to ionize water—which studies show decreases plaque and calculus accumulation.
10. The Best Compact Irrigator Option: The Cordless Waterpik Water Flosser
Similar to the Hydro Floss, this product is great for patients who aren’t able to integrate regular flossing into their lives. Waterpik offers a few versions of this product, but this one is specifically great for folks who maybe aren’t in the same place every night or don’t have too much counter space.
But which floss do the dentists at Dental Professional prefer?
Dr. Jacobs: “I use Glide Pro-Health (Oral-B brand). It’s smooth during use and easy to find in stores (you can buy it in bulk at Costco) I also use a Hydrofloss oral irrigator—even after brushing and flossing, it’s amazing what you can ‘power-wash’ out of your teeth.”
Dr. Finkel: “I use one of the many samples I always have coming into the office—it’s not so much which floss, but ensuring flossing happens at all. Given a choice, I use a medium thickness, unwaxed floss.”
Apr 14th, 2020 9:38 am
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