How to Floss with a Water Flosser or Dental Floss

Flossing is important to your daily oral health routine. But string flossing can be awkward, messy and hard to do right.

According to the British Dental Health Foundation, you should use dental floss at least once a day to remove debris and plaque between teeth.

If you are looking for an effective alternative to string floss, you can floss with water instead!

How to Floss with a Waterpik® Water Flosser

How to Use a Waterpik® Water Flosser in 6 Simple Steps

Fill and place water flosser reservoir
  1. Fill the reservoir with warm water and place firmly on the base.
  2. Select a tip and click into the handle.
    Note: If this is the first use, set the pressure control dial to high. Point the tip into the sink and turn on until water flows. Turn unit off.
Lean over the sink
  1. Start with the lowest pressure setting, lean over the sink, place tip in your mouth.
  2. Turn unit on. Close lips enough to prevent splashing, let water flow from your mouth into sink.
Move the flosser tip along the gums
  1. Aim the tip at the gumline.
  2. When finished, turn unit off and use the tip eject button to remove the tip.
Depending on the Waterpik® Water Flosser model, you can use the in-handle pause or on/off switch to stop water flow if needed. You can also aim the tip using the rotating base. (These features are not available on all models.)

For more information:

How to Floss with Dental Floss

Clinical studies show that when used properly, dental floss can improve oral health. But overly vigorous or incorrect flossing can also result in gum tissue damage.

Follow these instructions for properly using dental floss.

How to floss with dental floss
  1. Use about 18 inches of dental floss wound around one of your middle fingers, with the rest wound around the opposite middle finger.
  2. Hold the dental floss tightly between the thumbs and forefingers and gently insert it between the teeth.
  3. Curve the dental floss against the side of the tooth in a 'C' shape
  4. Rub the floss gently up and down, keeping it pressed against the tooth. Don't jerk or snap the floss.
  5. Repeat on adjacent and subsequent teeth.
  6. As you move from tooth to tooth unwind the clean floss with one finger and take up the used floss with the opposite finger.