What is a proxy toothbrush?

Jonathan B. Levine, DMD
Proxy is kind of the slang name for the brushes that are specifically designed to get in between the necks of teeth. It's taken from the term inter-proximal, which means "between the necks of the teeth". This tiny compact brush fits snugly between the necks horizontally. If your dentist ever put splinted crowns (crowns that are attached to one another) in your mouth, those splinted crowns are actually designed to allow this brush to slip in between the gum line area below the contact. Proxy brushes are great at mechanically pushing bacteria and food out of the gum area to prevent future inflammation.

It’s important to note that a proxy brush shouldn’t be used on natural teeth because it could open a contact area and create a dark triangle. There’s actually a name for this; it’s called “black triangle disease”. Unless you’ve got splints, stick with floss.
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Renowned dentist and creator of the GoSMILE product line Dr. Levine offers this complete guide to getting a whiter, brighter smile. 15 photos & illustrations.

Continue Learning about Healthy Oral Hygiene

Healthy Oral Hygiene

Healthy Oral Hygiene

Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily constitute the basics of good oral hygiene. Keeping other parts of your mouth, such as your gums, healthy can benefit your overall health by preventing the spread of germs and dis...

ease. At-home care should be supplemented by professional care. When plaque or tartar develops, a dentist or oral hygienist will use special tools to scrape (scale) the teeth clean without damage. Flouride treatment can help keep teeth cavity-free. Learn more about healthy oral hygiene with expert advice from Sharecare.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.