Is Valentine’s Day Bad for Your Oral Health?

February means a lot of different things to different people. This month sees Sri Lanka, Saint Lucia, Estonia and the Dominican Republic all celebrate their own Independence Days. In the US, February is National Pet Dental Health Month and National Children’s Dental Health Month, while in the UK, it is LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) History Month. All these events draw the public’s attention to different topics, but they’re all designed to raise awareness and educate the general population.

The Science Behind Kissing

Of course, one of the most popular events in February is Valentine’s Day, whereupon people are encouraged to tell that special someone how they feel about them. Kissing is a common activity on this day, so here’s a snapshot of its perceived positive and negative affects on oral health:

  • Simple kisses use as few as 2 muscles, while more compassionate kissing involves 23-34 muscles
  • Kissing consumes between 5 and 26 calories per minute
  • Saliva production is increased during kissing, helping to clean away food debris
  • Up to 278 different species of bacteria are exchanged during a kiss
  • 5% of these are classified as pathogenic

Perhaps for some, the risks of sharing of a toothbrush should also be mentioned. As reported in an article in the BDJ, more than 10 million bacteria can be found on a used toothbrush – considerably more than on the average toilet seat! While the majority of these are not harmful to the individual (the microorganisms inside the mouth will largely reflect those on a person’s toothbrush), they may pose a risk to someone else. No matter how close two people may be, it remains crucial for them to have their own toothbrushes!

To help your patients reduce the negative side affects of kissing, this is a good time of year to highlight the need for regular dental check-ups and an effective oral health care routine. Recommending proven and easy-to-use adjuncts for patients to incorporate within their daily regimes is of huge advantage.

The Science Behind the Water Flosser

As you will see at IDS, the Waterpik® Water Flosser is supported by extensive clinical research, with almost 70 papers and studies published over the last 50 years. They demonstrate that the Water Flosser is:

  • More effective at removing plaque1 and reducing gingival bleeding2 than interdental brushes
  • Significantly more effective at improving oral health than the Sonicare® Air Floss Pro
  • Up to 50% more effective at reversing gingivitis, up to 93% more effective for reducing bleeding and can remove up to 29% more plaque than string floss3,4
  • Up to three times as effective for removing plaque around braces and twice as effective for improving gum health around implants, compared to string floss

International Dental Show

Cologne, 21st – 25th March 2017

Hall 11.3 on stands J040 and K049

Visit our stand to discover more about:

  • Waterpik® Cordless Express Water Flosser – compact and waterproof with an easy-to-fill reservoir, this battery operated Water Flosser is ideal for use in small bathrooms and when travelling. Its dual-water pressure control system also enables patients to adjust the water intensity to their own preferences.
  • Waterpik® Complete Care 5.0 – brushing alone is not enough, so this comprehensive solution combines the effective Sensonic® Professional Plus toothbrush with a Water Flosser ensuring patients’ daily oral health routines are optimised.


Visit our stand at IDS to try the Waterpik® Water Flosser and learn while you watch our video. Plus, don’t forget to pick up your FREE trial unit and start water flossing yourself!

  1. Lyle DM, Goyal JG. Qaqish JG, Schuller R. Comparison of water flosser and interdental brush on plaque removal: a single-use pilot study. J Clin Dent 2016;27:23-26.
  2. Goyal CR, Lyle DM, Qaqish, JG, Schuller R. Comparison of water flosser and interdental brush on reduction of gingival bleeding and plaque: a randomized controlled pilot study. J Clin Dent 2016; 27:61-65.
  3. Barnes CM et al (2005) Comparison of irrigation to floss as an adjunct to tooth brushing: effect on bleeding, gingivitis, and supragingival plaque. J Clin Dent 16(3):71-7
  4. Goyal CR, Lyle DM, Qaqish JG, Schuller R. Evaluation of the plaque removal efficacy of a water flosser compared to string floss in adults after a single use. J Clin Dent 2013;24:37-42.