You hear it every time you visit the dentist, “Do you floss?” And the answer I normally get is, “No”. I can immediately tell when patients floss. But, if I told you flossing you teeth only takes 2 minutes a day and has big benefits to oral health.
Yes, it is true some people live a lifetime without flossing and still manage to keep their teeth. But the average person will begin to lose teeth in mid to later life due to gum disease unless they floss. And with junk food and soda becoming staples in most homes, flossing has never been so important. One simple option is to use floss holders. These disposable plastic Y-shaped that hold a span of floss between two prongs to allow one-handed use. There’s even a flossing toothbrush and whitening dental floss to fight plaque build up.
Plaque can lead to tooth decay and gum disease, and removing it can be difficult through brushing alone. Flossing can help. Flossing at night is typically more useful than flossing in the morning. As long as you do a thorough job, it doesn’t matter if you brush or floss first. However, flossing before brushing might allow more fluoride from your toothpaste to reach between your teeth. Learn an effective and safe technique by watching this 1 minute video by Colgate Oral Care.
Properly Floss Your Teeth in 5 Easy Steps
Wrap about 18 inches of floss between both middle fingers of your hands. Leave about two inches of floss between your fingers to work with.
Grasping the clean floss between your thumbs and forefingers, slide the floss in a back and forth motion between your teeth.
Once the floss has reached the gum-line, hold the floss closely to the tooth, and in a gentle motion sweep the floss up and down the base of the tooth.
Repeat this process for each tooth, and don’t forget the back molars. As you repeat this process make sure to unwind a fresh section of floss for each tooth.
After you finish flossing, be sure to rinse your mouth thoroughly.