You know you should be flossing every day. The dentist reminds you every time you visit, but are you flossing correctly? Reading the following tips on how to floss the right way can help with gum health and help you avoid cavities.
Tips for How to Floss the Right Way
· When: Most dentists would recommend you brush, floss and rinse after every meal or snack. However, most people simply won’t go through all those steps, so floss at least once per day.
· What to Use: There are many different types of floss on the market. You can choose from waxed, unwaxed or flavored flosses. There are even different widths of flosses, from ribbons to strings. According to the American Dental Association, there is no difference in how effective wax versus unwaxed floss is. It truly is a matter of preference and the floss you like is the one you’re most likely to use.
· Before or After Brushing: Either is acceptable, but flossing first will remove any debris between the teeth. This means that the fluoride from toothpaste or mouth wash can reach between your teeth better.
You will want to discard dental floss after each use. The floss can contain bacteria after being used, so you don’t want to redeposit bacteria onto your teeth.
There is a proper way to floss that will get your teeth as clean as possible. First, pull off about 12 to 18 inches of dental floss.
Wrap the floss around your middle finger on each hand. The main goal here is to have enough control to push the floss between your teeth, so if a different position is more comfortable for you it is fine to use that instead.
Start at the back, top right of your mouth (or left). It doesn’t matter which side you start on, but it is important that you move methodically through all your teeth so they are all cleaned.
Gently push the floss between the teeth until it reaches below your gum line. Now, gentle bring the floss up and down along the tooth surface 4-5 times on each tooth.
Every two or three teeth, shift the floss so you are using a fresh section.
Our staff can show you the best way to floss and give you additional tips for good oral health.