Brushing your teeth twice a day is not enough for healthy teeth and gums. You will also need to floss to get food debris that the toothbrush was unable to get from your teeth and gums. Additionally, flossing helps get rid of plaque. Plaque not removed from the teeth and gums gradually leads to tooth decay and even tooth loss.
Flossing aids in removing plaque in hard-to-reach areas such as under the gums and in small gaps between teeth. Moreover, flossing polishes the surface of the tooth, reducing the risk of contracting gum disease. Therefore, it is advisable to floss at least once a day. Most people know that flossing is crucial but have no idea how to do it right. Here is a guide on the correct techniques you can use while flossing:
- Start by washing your hands. This is because you will be putting your hand in your mouth. Washing your hands ensures you do not carry germs into your mouth.
- Take about 18 inches of dental floss and cut it off. It may seem to be a lot, but it ensures that you have a clean piece of floss for each tooth.
- Wrap the eighteen inches of floss around one hand's middle or index finger, depending on your personal preference, and a small amount around the other hand's middle or index finger.
- Put the floss on two teeth then use a zigzag motion to gently direct floss between the teeth. Curl the floss at the base of the tooth to form a C shape. This helps to clean the space between the tooth and the gum.
- Floss against the tooth surface and under the gumline, making sure that you floss the back of each tooth as well. Unroll a fresh portion of floss from one hand's finger as you switch from one tooth to the next while rolling the used floss onto the other hand's finger.
- Make sure you repeat these steps for each tooth to ensure that all plaque is removed.
- Lastly, ensure you wash your hand after you finish flossing.
If you want to floss properly, begin by ensuring you set a flossing pattern and do it daily. It will come a long way in ensuring you have healthy teeth and gums. Moreover, this will help to get rid of plaque that will decrease the chance of getting tooth decay. Here are additional recommendations to make sure you get the best results. You should avoid:
- Reusing the same part on a different tooth. It is unhygienic as this part is most likely covered in plaque.
- Replacing brushing with flossing. Flossing helps to clean those spaces that a toothbrush cannot reach. This means brushing is equally as important.
- Being aggressive while you are flossing. This may cause a cut and cause your gums to bleed.
- Flossing in a hurry. Flossing requires you to be thorough. If you do it quickly, you might miss food debris trapped between your teeth. Additionally, you might not get all of the plaque out.
- The fear of getting the floss under the gumline, because this is where plaque and bacteria hide. Be gentle and you will not hurt yourself.
For more information on dental floss recommendations, visit Woodyard Dental Care at our office in Paducah, Kentucky. You can also call 270-213-6620 to book an appointment today.