You know you ought to do it every day, but do you? What are we talking about? It’s flossing your teeth, of course! The American Dental Association says that we should floss our teeth once daily, along with brushing twice daily.
If you don’t floss as you should, maybe you feel it’s not that important. Or perhaps it seems too tedious to do correctly. Maybe you simply forget to floss. Whatever the reason, keep in mind that flossing IS a very beneficial practice that will help keep your smile in top form.
Plus, National Flossing Day is on November 26 – the day after Thanksgiving. What better time to floss your teeth than after feasting on a hearty Thanksgiving dinner? With these thoughts in mind, the team at Advanced Dentistry wants to devote this blog post to flossing, its benefits, and how to do it correctly.
As always, if you have any questions about your smile care or if you need to schedule an appointment, just give us a call at 732-506-2876 and a member of our friendly staff will be glad to help.
Flossing Helps Prevent Oral Problems
So, why do we need to floss, anyway? The answer is simple – to remove food particles that get trapped between our teeth. These particles form plaque and allow bacteria to grow in the nooks and crannies of our mouths. The bacteria secrete acids that can eat through our tooth enamel and create small holes (cavities). Bacteria can also build up under our gumline and cause gum disease.
Both cavities and gum disease require dental treatment to correct. Cavities usually need a tooth filling, while a “deep cleaning” with scaling and root planing will take care of most mild to moderate gum disease.
Flossing our teeth daily helps prevent these problems and keeps our smiles healthy and bright. Plus, we’ll maintain confidence to smile genuinely around others because we know our teeth and gums are attractive and in good shape.
Proper Flossing Pays Off
If we’re going to take time to floss every day, we need to make sure we’re doing it the right way. Here’s how the ADA recommends to floss:
- You’ll first need to tear off a piece of dental floss about 18 inches long.
- Wrap the two ends around your middle fingers on each hand to anchor the floss.
- Hold the floss between your index fingers and thumbs.
- Gently insert the floss between your teeth and curve it into a “C” shape around your tooth.
- With smooth motions, move the floss up and down against the edges and sides of your tooth to remove food particles.
- Rinse the floss as necessary to keep it clean and working properly.
- Remember to floss between each of your teeth as well as the backside of your rear-most teeth.
Some people prefer to use floss picks instead of dental floss, which work just as well. Here’s a good technique in that case:
- Insert the pick between your teeth and gently press it against your gums.
- Move the pick up and down against your tooth edges to remove debris.
- Rinse the pick if needed and continue to floss between each of your teeth, including your back teeth.
Daily flossing will help prevent cavities and disease, so make sure you’re doing all you can for your smile. Also, be sure you visit Advanced Dentistry twice a year for a dental cleaning and exam. These routine checkups will help us catch and treat oral problems early on.