Flossing: It’s Just As Important As Brushing!

In our everyday dental hygiene routine, it can be easy to forget the importance of all the steps: brushing our teeth and our tongues, mouth washing, and flossing. Each of those steps together help create a white, bright smile! Today, the spotlight will be on flossing, which plays a very important role in keeping our teeth clean and plaque-free. When we brush our teeth, the toothbrush can only reach three sides of the tooth: the outer and inner walls, and the top that we use to chew. However, the sides of the tooth that are up against another tooth are not cleaned, which leaves two sides neglected. That’s where flossing comes in. The floss can reach down in between those hard to get places and clean all areas sufficiently. This keeps our breath smelling fresh, reduces the incidence of cavities, whitens our teeth, gets rid of food between our teeth, and removes excess plaque that has the potential to build-up into gum disease.

The American Dental Association recommends flossing once a day (or more if you prefer). Some people prefer to do it in the morning, before they brush their teeth, or at night, after brushing their teeth. The truth is that the time of day does not matter, as long as you are making sure to floss once a day or every 24 hours. Set aside a couple minutes a day to make a huge difference in the health of your teeth and your body. Also, don’t forget children need to floss too! Once there are teeth that touch, parents should begin flossing daily to keep their growing teeth in good shape. There are several ways in which you can floss, making it almost impossible to skip!

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Traditional Floss

Most people have seen this type of floss, standing the test of time. It is regularly used at the dentists’ office, appearing as a string that is cut into a size necessary to get between teeth. There is waxed floss and unwaxed floss, which have no difference in their effectiveness but are chosen based on personal preference of the individual. In addition, there is flavored floss, typically mint, which can leave you with a fresh taste for later.

Floss Picks

This type of floss is on the rise, as it provides convenience for those looking to expedite the process. The floss is held between two sides with a stick to hold so that you can easily reach into all spots. It is important to be aware that this floss does not clean as effectively as regular floss. This is because it cannot bend into all areas of the tooth as regular floss can. However, it is still a great alternative and recommended for use if the individual does not prefer traditional floss.

Oral Irrigator Picks

Oral Irrigators are fairly new devices that shoot a jet stream of water between teeth, removing food and plaque from the teeth. This is a great option for individuals with braces or permanent retainers, as it can get between the teeth without a wire barrier in the way. It can also work for those individuals who do not prefer traditional floss or floss picks.

Now that you have all the information, get to flossing! It can really make a huge difference in the future of your dental health, making you and your dentist happy. If you have any questions regarding flossing techniques or what works best for you, feel free to call or e-mail our office and we’d be happy to assist you!



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