Proper brushing and regular visits to your dentist are essential tasks to have a healthy smile. However, flossing is also an important step in removing food, plaque, and bacteria from your mouth, teeth, and gums. Unfortunately, most people do not place time and energy into this key part of oral hygiene. While surprising, this simple tasks can reduce the risk of harsh dental problems that can be painful and costly to repair. Using this guide, you will learn how to avoid a few common flossing mistakes so you can ensure your smile is appealing and healthy.
Not Flossing Every Day
Dentists recommend brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time to protect your teeth and gums, but you may be confused about when and how you should floss.
Thankfully, you do not necessarily need to floss each time you brush your teeth. Removing food, plaque, and bacteria from in between the teeth and on the gum tissue is possible by flossing just one time a day.
In addition, it does not matter which time of the day you floss, so you can floss after brushing in the morning or in the middle of the day. As long as you are brushing properly and flossing once per day, you can protect your mouth, teeth, and gums.
Believing Brushing Is Sufficient
Your dentist may say you are doing a phenomenal job brushing your teeth. No matter how well you are brushing, it is not enough.
Proper brushing will remove food residue and plaque from the surface of your teeth and even your gum tissue. It is also effective for ridding the mouth of harmful bacteria that can lead to bad breath and gum disease. Brushing is not capable of removing food and other residue from in between each of your teeth, though.
Allowing this residue to linger in between your teeth and on your gum tissue increases the risk of cavities and decay that can spread onto the gums. If left untreated, this small amount of bacteria can cause gum disease, pain, and the loss of one or more teeth.
Not Flossing with Floss
Another common mistake many people make is deciding to floss, but not using actual floss. Toothpicks, paper clips, and other thin objects should never be inserted into your mouth to floss between your teeth.
Using these items can puncture the gum tissue, resulting in bleeding, pain, and even infections caused by exposure to food. Also, using some of these items to floss could scratch your teeth, decreasing the protective surface enamel and affecting the underlying health of your smile.
Dental-grade, traditional floss is the only thing you should use to remove food from in between your teeth.
Snapping and Sawing With Floss
The method of using your floss can also be damaging to your mouth, teeth, and gums.
Many people use a hard snapping motion to move the floss into tight spaces between the teeth. This may seem like the best way to finish your flossing task, but the hard motion can tear your gum tissue.
If you are struggling to move the floss in between your teeth, use a thinner floss, ask your dentist about a thinner floss that is designed for thin spaces.
Once you have the floss in place, you should avoid using a sawing motion. Moving the floss back and forth in a sawing motion will remove food and plaque on the gum tissue, but it will not be able reach debris that is close to the tooth and gum line.
For a more effective cleaning, move the floss in a C-shape. This will help remove reside from the gum tissue while scooping out any debris that is left under the tooth and gum line.
For a healthy smile, you must make flossing a priority. By avoiding these mistakes and using your dentist's advice, you can floss in an effective and efficient manner.Share
1 September 2017
Hi, my name is Kevin Nelson and I want to tell you about my experience. I had a painful tooth so I went to see my dentist. After the examination, he said that I needed to have a root canal to save the tooth. I told the dentist to just pull the tooth instead and then he explained why that wasn't a good idea. He said that pulling the tooth would cause additional problems and then he told me what could happen. I didn't want any more problems, so the dentist did the root canal and I'm glad that he did. I wanted to write a blog to tell others about the benefits of a root canal and what to expect during the procedure. I hope that by getting the word out, other people won't make the same mistake that I almost did by getting a perfectly good tooth pulled.