While most people understand the need to brush their teeth every day, many don’t realize that brushing only reaches about two thirds of the surface of your teeth. The only way to reach the other third is with flossing. Failure to clean between teeth can lead to dental decay and the potential for gum disease to form. Even your dentist or hygienist flosses your teeth each time you have them cleaned.
Is There A Right Way To Floss?
The type of floss you use isn’t as important as how you use it.
Since you’re putting your hands in your mouth, it is important to make sure they are clean. You don’t want to transfer germs from hands into your mouth.
If you are using standard dental floss, don’t skimp. Use enough that you can keep using clean floss to clean between teeth.
Floss threaders or floss picks may make flossing a little easier. Waterpiks are also a great tool.
Make sure to reach between all teeth – it doesn’t matter where you start … but floss them all including that area behind that last tooth.
Gently work floss between each tooth massaging the gum tissue as well.
Flossing at night before bed is an ideal time. Once you have brushed and flossed, rinse thoroughly to dispose of everything you have dislodged.
The Importance of Flossing
Flossing promotes healthy gum tissue. Gums are stimulated when flossed correctly reducing the likelihood of gum disease.
Daily flossing reduces plaque formation. Plaque develops on teeth when the foods and beverages we consume are allowed to build on teeth. This plaque is a major contributor to dental decay, and provides a perfect breeding ground for the onset of gingivitis.
If flossing makes your gums bleed, you are being too aggressive or you may already be in the beginning stages of gum disease. Your dentist can teach you the proper technique; and if gingivitis is present, treatment is available to correct it.
It is important for people of all ages to floss daily. This includes children. Experiment with different flossing tools to find the one that will promote daily use and supervise to make sure your family members are using them.
By flossing daily, you are enhancing the likelihood of keeping your natural teeth healthy for your lifetime. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Cowdin Cosmetic Dentistry today.