Dental Floss

Flossing via dental floss is an effective method of removing bacteria and plaque trapped between your teeth.  Flossing also helps remove plaque that may cause gums to be red and inflamed, result in bleeding gums and bone loss.  Without the use of dental floss, the plaque and bacteria trapped between your teeth can lead to tooth decay, gingivitis, and periodontal disease.

So how do I floss my teeth?  Is it even necessary?  Many people grumble at the thought of having to floss.  It can be time consuming, cumbersome, and physically challenging to place the floss between your fingers and try to place it between your teeth.  Ultimately wsing dental floss is really the most effective way to ensure thorough home care.

flossing

WHY DO I NEED TO FLOSS

But first though, we need to understand why we need to floss.  Brushing is great for removing bacteria/plaque from the outer surfaces of the teeth.  But what about the surfaces of the teeth that are touching other teeth and one another?  How do we get those areas cleaned?

The best and most effective way to clean the surfaces between the teeth is by flossing.  It’s really THE best way to clean the area between the teeth.  The toothbrushes’ bristle unfortunately is not fine enough to get in between the teeth and remove plaque and food particles.  By placing dental floss between your teeth, one can ensure all of your teeth that’s hidden against each other are nice and clean.   Leaving plaque and bacteria there long term may cause severe gingivitis/gum disease, which may develop into periodontal disease, and ultimately may make your teeth prone to cavities, bone loss, and possible loss of teeth.

HOW TO FLOSS

How do we floss?  Wrap a piece of dental floss about 1 feet in length between your left and right index fingers.  With the aid of your thumb, gently press the floss between the teeth and glide the floss alongside the teeth.  Try to make sure the floss is not impinging onto the gums; then repeat for all the surfaces between your teeth.

Ideally one should floss after each meal, but sometimes that’s not always practical or feasible.  I would strive for flossing at least once a day before going to bed.

A waterpik is a great addition to regular brushing and flossing.  A waterpik does not take the place of flossing and is not a substitute for flossing, but rather best served as an adjunct to brushing and flossing.

If you have any questions about flossing your teeth contact us at (425) 614-1600 today!

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