It seems almost universal that people hate to floss. What is it about taking a tiny piece of string and putting it in between your teeth that people find so unattractive? But there’s bad news for floss-haters: it’s an extremely important part of maintaining oral health.
The long-standing advice to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once daily is still relevant and important. The American Dental Association states that “an interdental cleaner is an essential part of taking care of your teeth and gums.”
And yes, interdental means something like floss. As a West Loop dentist, we want to educate you on the importance of regular flossing.
The mouth is home to a large number of bacteria. While some of these bacteria are natural and good, there is also potentially harmful bacteria. Flossing allows you to remove dental plaque buildup. If left unchecked this build-up of plaque can irritate your gums and cause gingivitis. The bacteria can also destroy the enamel on your teeth causing a cavity. Flossing prevents bacteria from building up in between your teeth and keeps your mouth healthy.
Brushing your teeth twice a day simply doesn’t suffice in cleaning your entire mouth. This is because brushing and flossing target different, but equally important areas of your mouth. While brushing takes care of the surface of your teeth, flossing gets the area in between your teeth where your toothbrush cannot reach. If this area is left unchecked, plaque can turn into tartar which cannot be removed by brushing or flossing alone.
Without the proper technique, your good-intentioned flossing may fall short. The American Dental Association has guidelines on proper technique when flossing. Each end of the floss should be wrapped around one of your middle fingers. You should then pinch the floss between your forefinger and thumb. Rub the floss against the side of the tooth keeping it gently against the tooth. Floss all your teeth and behind your teeth in the back.
For the best dental care around come into Washington Dental Care. When dental problems arise, we understand it can be an unexpected expense. That’s why we focus on being a West Loop dentist you can count on. Call us today at 312-624-8070.