You may have heard that flossing is as important as brushing your teeth. But are we really into flossing the right way? We are mostly not aware of the importance of cleaning between the teeth that our toothbrushes can’t reach.
Although most of us brush our teeth twice a day, not everyone flosses as much. According to a national poll, almost 20 percent of Americans never floss at all. This article will enlighten you on the importance of flossing and is a chance to upgrade the way you have been flossing your whole life.
What Is Flossing?
Flossing is cleaning in between the teeth using dental flossing tools to remove plaque stuck between the teeth where toothbrushes cannot reach.
It cleans the food particles stuck between the teeth and prevents bacteria and plaque formation. Plaque accumulation can cause cavities and gum diseases. Thus, flossing has to be made an inevitable part of our daily routine.
There are different kinds of flosses available today. The most common types are waxed or unwaxed threads that can fit in between teeth. Dental floss with wax coating can help to easily get in between crowded teeth.
Dental tapes are another broader type of floss that is easier to handle with braces or gaps between teeth. Super flosses have three components that facilitate regular cleaning as well as flossing underneath and around appliances. Let’s highlight the importance of flossing and how it impacts our dental hygiene.
Importance Of Flossing:
Our toothbrushes cannot access the plaque stuck between the teeth from the foods we eat. Plaque contains bacteria that feed on food particles that remain in the mouth and release an acid that damages the enamel of our teeth causing cavities.
It can even get collected on our gumline and lead to gum diseases. This explains the prominence of flossing in our oral hygiene regime. Flossing at least once a day can remove plaque and decrease the possibility of cavities and gum disease.
Flossing endorses the following benefits on our oral health.
- Removes food particles and plaque
- Eliminates bad breath-causing bacteria
- Prevents cavities
- Reduce chances of red and swollen gums
- Prevents gingivitis and periodontitis
- Strengthens teeth
- Healthy gum lines
What Is The Correct Way Of Flossing?
The American Dental Association recommends cleaning the teeth at least once a day. More important than flossing is the way we floss. An incorrect way of flossing will not eliminate food particles efficiently and will generate bacteria and damage your teeth and gums.
The right time to floss is before brushing your teeth. When you floss after brushing, the food particles remain in your mouth and form plaque. Let’s go through the most accurate way of flossing step by step.
- Cut off about 18 inches of floss. Wind most of it around both middle fingers leaving one or two inches to floss with.
- Stand in front of a mirror to make sure your floss is reaching everywhere.
- Hold the floss tight between the thumb and index fingers. Move vertically in between the teeth.
- Once you reach the base of the teeth, gently curve the floss to a C shape to clean beneath the gum line.
- While flossing the upper teeth form a U shape and slide through the teeth.
- Do not snap or use force as this may cause cuts or bruises on the gum tissues.
- Repeat the process with each tooth with clean sections of floss.
- The floss can be removed with the same back-and-forth motion used to insert it.
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We are now aware that good dental hygiene includes more than brushing our teeth. Brushing may help clean your teeth, remove plaque, and clean cavities to an extent. But it is not enough for proper dental health and to prevent oral diseases.
Flossing removes the excess plaque and food particles that remain even after brushing. Apart from brushing twice a day and flossing daily, it is also important to schedule routine dental checkups at least twice a year to diagnose and prevent the onset of various gum and teeth infections.
Following these instructions and making them a part of your life can keep your white pearls healthy and strong for years to come.