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Can toothpicks damage my gums?

Q: Can toothpicks damage my gums?

A: Toothpicks used aggressively will damage the gums even more quickly than the root surface. The gums may recede at the papilla area (the triangle of gum tissue between the teeth) leaving behind a black void which is unattractive. It is especially unpleasant if gaps are visible between the front eight teeth. It is easy to avoid the gum recession if you use the toothpick gently and only between the back teeth. Also floss and brush gently (but thoroughly).


Dr. Maksim has been practicing dentistry in the San Diego area for over 20 years.

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