Is using a toothpick safe for our teeth?

Asking yourself a question whether toothpicks are safe for dental health or not? Read the article and decide what is more useful for oral health toothpick or floss.


Previously, each institution (restaurants, cafes, etc.) on the tables always had a toothpick, so that people can clean the teeth from the food stuck between the teeth. Today this is no longer met because people have realized that there are more effective and safe ways to maintain hygiene in their mouths. Today it is proven that the use of toothpicks does more harm than good. But it was not always so…

Toothpick is a pointed stick, which was devised to remove food remnants from your mouth long before the advent of hygiene. According to archaeological research, toothpicks were already in use at the time of Neanderthals, who used herbs, various branches for cleaning teeth. Scientists have discovered hollows in the jaws, which appeared as a result of a long teeth friction. It is believed that Neanderthals used toothpicks not only for cleaning the teeth from food pieces, but also to ease the pain of dental diseases.


The oldest toothpick was made of gold and was found in present Iraq. In ancient Greece and Rome they were made of precious metals, ivory, bronze, wood and feathers. Toothpicks were recognized as essential attributes, so the Romans attached them to their clothing by means of pins.

What do we have today?

Useful or not?

In these days, the subject performs all the same functions as before - cleans the interdental spaces from food stuck between the teeth. If you are a fan of the hygiene, the use for these purposes you should only have special toothpicks, while to use them for picking your teeth is strictly prohibited.

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Today, for the manufacture of toothpicks we use wood, plastic, and there are also special medical toothpicks. They can be bought in pharmacies and stores where they are sold in a special container to preserve hygiene and sanitary safety.

According to dentists, toothpicks made of wood and pointed at both ends, are not an effective and safe way of maintaining oral health, since during the use they injure the gums. Moreover, if they break down during use, this can lead to the fact that it remains in the cavity piece.

As for the plastic toothpicks, during their manufacturing great attention is paid to their durability, reliability, resistance to grease, acids and alkalis. Their efficiency is higher than of wood toothpicks, but it is still not the same as that of special ones, which are considered the best in this regard.


Medical toothpicks - dunnage strips made of stainless steel, which have a thickness of only 0.1mm. Because of its shape they are almost perfectly suited to the shape of tooth gaps. In addition, they are easy to wash and could be sterilized by boiling.

However, if you take care of your mouth, pay attention to the safety and health of the toothpick, hygiene, than the best tool is definitely irrigator - modern tool for cleaning hard to reach places.

In any case, it is worth remembering that there are more effective and safe methods of cleaning the interdental spaces. To do this in the modern world is possible with the use of oral irrigator, which carefully and safely will save you from food pieces and plaque using water flow.

If you can’t have a constant access to the irrigator, you can use dental floss. It can perfectly replace the toothpick by providing a set of advantages. It won’t damage your teeth, and moreover such flosses usually have nice mint flavor which can’t but make your teeth care even more pleasant.

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