August 25, 2018
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Of all the things you can do to maintain a healthy mouth, flossing has got to be the least expensive! But many patients don’t take the time to floss. And if you do, you might not be doing it correctly! Welcome to Flossing 101…

Why should you floss? Your toothbrush isn’t enough to brush away the plaque that builds up between teeth and at the gumline. The acids produced from the bacteria in the plague is what erodes the enamel from your teeth making them weak, causeing a cavity. Most cavitys develop between the teeth due to not flossing. It is such simple solution, but too few peopele do it. Manual toothbrushes are effective at reaching the front and back of your teeth but cannot access the space between your teeth and under the gum. An electric brush such as the Sonicare and water irrigators such as the Hydrofloisser or Water Flosser are excellent aids in accesing these areas and removing the plague. 

How often should you floss? Once a day is recomended. Ideally every time you brush your teeth, which should be after every meal! 

Should you floss before or after brushing? Either one is fine! As long as you do it at least once a day. 

What is the proper way to floss? Pull out about 18 inches of floss (any brand is fine). Wind the floss tightly around your index or middle fingers on both hands so that the floss between your hands is taut. Slide the floss between each set of teeth that touch, as well as where your last molar meets your gums. Slide the floss up and down the teeth, following the natural curve of each tooth in a “C” shape. Imagine the floss giving each tooth a little hug! Floss between teeth and where your teeth meet your gums. Use a new clean section of floss for each set of teeth. You can also ask your Hygienist at your next dental visit. 

For a helpful infographic, use this one from the American Dental Association. https://www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/Science%20and%20Research/Files/watch_materials_floss.ashx

Can’t floss or just don't like it? Many people have difficulty flossing or simply do not care for the way it feels between their teeth. Others have conditions such as arthritis or limited dexterity that makes it difficult to floss. Consider a dental pick, oral irrigator, electric flosser, floss pick or proxy brush. There are a variety of products on the market.  Some of our favorites are the Hydroflosser, Soft Picks and proxy brushes. 

Give us a call at 407-774-4433 or ask about options at your next visit  We will help find a solution for you!

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