Are You Flossing Daily?

floss

I have found that many patients are skipping flossing as part of their daily oral health routine. Being in too much of a rush, being too busy or being under the impression that if you brush you don’t have to floss is just some of the reasons patients don’t floss on a daily basis.

What You Need to Know
The gaps between your teeth are a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and also plaque build-up. While you may be brushing for two minutes twice daily, chances are that your toothbrush isn’t effectively getting into the gaps, removing the bacteria, plaque and food debris, which if left can result in gum disease, cavities and tooth decay.

Types of Dental Floss

I have found a number of my patients don’t floss because they claim it gets stuck in their teeth or their gums hurt after flossing. There are a number of options available from nylon string to floss sticks. In most instances floss sticks are easier to use. These sticks are plastic sticks that hold a piece of floss. You can easily clean between each tooth with the sticks and while they are slightly more expensive than the traditional nylon string, you can take them anywhere and use them at any time with ease.

When to Floss
Some patients are confused on how often to floss. Once a day is enough, though twice is preferred. You should make flossing part of your oral health routine, when you brush, you floss. This way you can ensure that you get all the bacteria and plaque from between your teeth to reduce the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.

You can floss before brushing, it only takes a minute to work your way between each tooth and then brush your teeth to remove the debris. Remember don’t rinse after brushing, leaving the fluoride toothpaste on your teeth for as long as possible.
It is also always ideal to carry dental floss with you. If you go out for lunch and something gets stuck between your teeth, you can quickly remove it to reduce the risk of irritation later in the day.

A few Interesting Facts You Never Knew about Dental Floss
Dental floss has been around for centuries. In fact Johnson and Johnson first patented dental floss in 1898. In those days it was made of silk to help promote healthy teeth and gums.

It wasn’t until the 1940’s that the nylon string dental floss that you use today was introduced.

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