If you have good oral hygiene, brushing your teeth is an integral part of your morning and bedtime routines – but what about flossing? According to WebMD, flossing is even more important than brushing, so why do so many skip this step? If you make any of the following excuses to avoid flossing, rethink your decision.
Food Doesn’t Get Stuck in My Teeth
Contrary to popular belief, the main reason to floss isn’t to get rid of food stuck between your teeth; it’s to remove plaque. This white, sticky substance exists in everyone’s mouth, and the only ways to get rid of it are by flossing or having a deep cleaning from your dentist. While Dr. Evanson is certainly able to provide preventative teeth cleaning every six months, flossing is something you can do at home every day, making it important for preventing gum disease and tooth decay.
I Don’t Know How to Floss
Just because you don’t know how doesn’t mean you should skip this important dental hygiene task. To floss correctly, follow these tips:
- Break off 18 inches of floss from the spool. Wrap the ends around each of your middle fingers.
- Grasp the floss with your thumb and forefinger and use a sawing motion to guide the floss between two of your teeth.
- Rub the floss along the gum line, arching it so it rubs against one tooth and then the other.
- Gently pull the floss out from between your teeth.
- Repeat this process between all your teeth, using fresh sections of floss as you go. Be sure to floss behind your back molars as well.
Flossing is Too Difficult
If you dread flossing because you don’t feel coordinated enough to do it properly, find an alternative to traditional dental floss. Dental floss picks are the closest equivalent. They consist of a small piece of floss stretched between a U-shaped piece of plastic. A small handle protruding from the U-shaped portion lets you comfortably hold the floss pick without having to wrap floss around your fingers.
I Don’t Have Time to Floss
It only takes a minute or so to floss once you get good at it. Make it part of your morning and/or nightly routine. If you’re rushing to work, take a floss pick with you and use it while waiting in traffic. Or stash a few in your desk at work to use after lunch. Fitting flossing into your schedule is easy if you’re willing to get creative.
Flossing Makes My Gums Bleed
This could be a sign of gum disease or gingivitis, which makes flossing even more important. Flossing shouldn’t be painful, but dropping the habit because your gums bleed is the opposite of what you should do. As you continue the flossing habit, your gums should get stronger and stop bleeding after about two weeks. If not, come see Dr. Evanson to see if you have a more serious problem.
I Have Braces
Because food and plaque is more likely to get trapped under bands and wires, flossing when you have braces is very important. Special stiff floss makes it easier to thread under your braces so you can pass it between your teeth. Another option is to use a water flosser with the orthodontic attachment. This sprays a fine jet of water between your teeth to remove food particles and plaque faster and easier than painstakingly threading floss between every bracket.
In addition to flossing at least once a day, be sure to visit the dentist every six months for a cleaning and checkup. Please contact Evanson DDS online or call us at (720) 409-0008 to schedule an appointment.Leave a reply →