Do you tend to reach for a toothpick after a meal in order to clean between your teeth? Chewing on a toothpick is never a good idea, even if you are using it to extract food particles from between the teeth. Read on to out more about the hidden dangers.
Beware of Toothpick Dangers
One of the greatest dangers associated with toothpicks is the potential for choking. More people choke on toothpicks than food each year. You may choke on the entire toothpick or part that has broken off. Speaking of splintering toothpicks, this is another reason that they are so dangerous. When toothpicks break, they can injure your gums, cheeks, and throat. Eventually, the tissue that they cut can become infected, painful, and inflamed.
Other Ways to Clean Between Your Teeth
While toothpick use is discouraged, there are other, safer ways to remove stubborn food particles from between the teeth. The best is dental floss, and you can carry a small pack around with you when you are out for emergency situations. In addition to removing food that gets stuck between your teeth, you should also floss once per day to keep plaque levels under control.
Another good way to clean between your teeth is to swish your mouth out with water. This is something that you can do when you don't have access to a toothbrush or floss. For large food particles that might be stuck in the gums, a saltwater rinse is beneficial to prevent inflammation.
You may also wish to chew on some sugar free gum in order to extract food particles from between your mouth. Gum with Xylitol will also stimulate the production of saliva, which can further clean your teeth.
Regular dental cleanings are another way to ensure your teeth stay healthy. Call us today to set up your next appointment.
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