Flossing is an essential part of dental health. Flossing helps keep your teeth and gums free from buildup and, eventually, plaque, that brushing does not always remove. Even if you floss your teeth every day, here’s how to do it right to make sure that you are reaping all of the healthy benefits of it.
Using the proper amount of floss is important because it makes it easy to reach between your teeth without having excess floss. Pull out about 18 inches (1 and a half feet), and wrap it around each middle finger, so that there is about 1-2 inches between to be used for cleaning. It is important to note that the floss does not need to be tightly wound around your fingers, but it has to stay in place during the flossing process
In order to remove the most plaque-causing buildup, the floss must be placed correctly. It should go between your teeth, and moved up and down in the space while simultaneously going back-and-forth. This motion will help loosen even the toughest particles stuck between your teeth. When you do this motion, the floss should form a c-shape around the tooth. This will help avoid “snapping” the floss as well, which can cause gum damage. When you go between teeth, shift the floss on your fingers so that each tooth has a fresh piece of floss to clean it.
Although this one may sound like a no-brainer, it can be easy to miss spots of the mouth while flossing, especially those that are harder to reach. One tooth can cause problems for the rest of the mouth, so care must be taken to reach every tooth. Molars (the teeth in the back) are often the most difficult to get to, but they usually have the most plaque.
If traditional flossing doesn’t seem to be right for you, but you still want to care for your teeth and prevent plaque buildup, there are several options available to you. The most popular alternative is hand-held flossers, which are easier to maneuver and don’t need to be wrapped around your fingers. Interproximal brushes are a great option if there are larger gaps between your teeth or if you have braces. Water irrigation is another good choice; it uses water pressure to push food and buildup out of the spaces between your teeth. Water irrigation is used by some dentists and hygienists, and was officially recommended by the American Dental Hygienists Association . It is a more expensive option, but for many people, it is worth the cost.
It is clear that flossing is an integral part of dental hygiene , and it is imperative that it is done correctly. Proper flossing can help your dental health immensely, which will keep your overall health in check as well. It is another hygienic method of preventative dental care that will save you money and stress in the long run. If you have any questions about flossing, hygiene, or your dental health, please do not hesitate to call our office at 906-774-0100!