You know you should do it every day, but how often do you actually do so? What are we talking about? Flossing your teeth, of course! The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends you floss your teeth once a day and brush your teeth for two minutes twice a day.
Perhaps you’re good about brushing, but neglect to floss your teeth. Maybe it’s because flossing seems tedious when done properly, or maybe it doesn’t seem all that necessary as long as you’re brushing regularly. Perhaps you simply forget about it. Whatever the reason, flossing IS a beneficial practice that will help keep your smile on track to be both beautiful and healthy.
In addition, November 26 is National Flossing Day. It’s the day after Thanksgiving – what better time to give your teeth a good flossing than after feasting on a delicious Thanksgiving dinner?
With these thoughts in mind, Dr. Denise Murmann and the team at Murmann Dental Health want to devote this blog to flossing, its benefits, and how to do it correctly. If you need to schedule an appointment with Dr. Murmann, just give us a call at 630-864-6065 and a member of our friendly team will be glad to help.
Regular Flossing Helps Prevent Dental Problems
So, why do we need to floss anyway? The reason is simple. Food particles get lodged in the nooks and crannies of your teeth where it’s easy for a toothbrush to miss. Left alone, this debris allows bacteria to multiply and secrete acids that can cause cavities to develop. Bacteria can also accumulate below the gumline, known as gum disease, and can eventually lead to tooth or bone loss if left untreated.
Flossing gets rid of these trapped food particles and helps prevent the need for tooth fillings (if you get a cavity) or deep cleaning (if gum disease develops). That’s why it’s so important to do it every day. You don’t want to give bacteria a stronghold in your mouth.
Proper Flossing Will Help Keep Your Smile Intact
Obviously, flossing the correct way is key to a healthy smile. The ADA recommends doing it this way:
- Start with a piece of dental floss about 18 inches long.
- Wind it around your two middle fingers to serve as an anchor.
- Grasp the floss on both ends using your thumbs and index fingers.
- Gently slide the floss between two of your teeth.
- Curve the floss into a “C” shape around a tooth.
- With a smooth motion, move the floss up and down the edges of the tooth.
- Rinse the floss as needed to keep it clean and help it do its job.
- Move to the next space between your teeth, being careful to floss each tooth as well as the sides of your rear-most teeth.
If you prefer to use a floss pick instead of dental floss, it will work just as well. Follow these steps:
- Gently insert the pick between your teeth, pressing it against your gums.
- With even motions, slide the pick up and down the edges of your tooth.
- Be sure to floss each space between your teeth, including the sides of your back teeth.
Daily flossing and brushing, along with dental cleanings and exams every six months, will help you maintain a healthy smile for life – not to mention the confidence that a beautiful smile inspires. Call Murmann Dental Health for an appointment with Dr. Denise Murmann today: 630-864-6065. You can also request an appointment online.