Flossing can easily become a forgotten practice of oral care. However, flossing is an important habit that will help us to maintain good oral health. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that you floss your teeth at least once a day along with brushing your teeth, rinsing with a mouthwash, and chewing sugar-free gum between meals.
Why Is Flossing Essential?
To achieve good dental health you should brush your teeth along with daily flossing. Both actions are carried out to remove plaque from the surface of your teeth. Brushing gets rid of it from the visible surfaces and flossing is used to take it off from between your teeth. If plaque is left to build up, it can develop into tartar and eventually lead to gum disease. Many lose their teeth because of gum disease.
Flossing will also remove food particles from between the teeth. Bacteria feeding on these particles can lead to bad breath.
How to Floss The Right Way?
There are two types of floss to choose from. There is a nylon floss or one made from filament. Nylon floss can come in flavors such as mint and therefore a good choice for children. Filament floss is less likely to break than nylon but often costs more.
The proper flossing technique starts by taking a piece of dental floss about 18 inches long. Then wrap one end on each of your index fingers leaving a 2-inch section of floss unwound. Other ways to get the 2-inch section is by pinching the floss between the thumbs and index fingers or using the middle fingers. Once done, carefully slide the floss between your teeth using a forward/backward motion. Don’t force the floss downwards, as it could snap through and damage the gum. Curve the floss into a ‘C’ shape once the floss is between the teeth and using the same forward/backward motion slide the floss around the tooth. Slide the floss down into the gum line to clean even the unseen places. When you have finished the tooth adjust the floss to a new piece at 2” long to clean the next tooth. Continue this process until you have cleaned all the teeth in your mouth. Make sure your hands are clean before you floss to reduce the transfer of bacteria into your mouth.
Is It Better To Brush First or Floss First?
Quite simply, it doesn’t matter. What is important is that you follow the recommendations of flossing once a day along with tooth brushing twice a day. Following these recommendations, you should be on your way to good oral health. You should also visit the dentist twice a year, as they will remove any buildup of plaque that you may have missed.
What If I have Neglected My Teeth Beyond Repair?
If you have missing teeth due to gum disease or tooth decay then the surgeons at San Jose Oral Surgery can help replace them. Operating from San Jose, CA, the expert surgeons offer expert dental care such as dental implants to their patients throughout Santa Clara County, CA. They are highly recommended to replace missing teeth as they look and feel like natural teeth as well as maintaining natural function. Contact us now to make an appointment and see whether dental implants are for you.