Brush twice a day, avoid sugary snacks in between meals, and visit the dentist regularly. Is it still necessary to floss your teeth?
Yes, at least once a day, is the quick answer. Flossing is arguably your most effective defence against plaque, a clinging bacterial biofilm that adheres to your teeth’ surfaces. Plaque is the leading cause of tooth decay, as well as periodontitis (gum disease), foul breath, and a variety of other problems. Brushing is an excellent start, but flossing gets plaque out of places where a brush can’t, like between teeth and beneath the gums. It also cleanses tooth surfaces and reduces gum disease risk.
- Aids in the prevention of bad breath
Everyone is looking for a way to get rid of bad breath. They experiment with carrying an emergency mouthwash bottle, Listerine PocketPaks, or sugarless mint gum in the car.
However, these are only band-aid solutions to a larger problem. It’s not because you don’t floss that you have bad breath daily; it’s because you don’t take care of your oral health.
You can get rid of tartar and other buildups between your teeth by flossing more frequently. The longer tartar builds up between your teeth, the fouler your breath will get.
Flossing every morning and night will help to keep bad breath at bay. This can also enhance your self-esteem and confidence when speaking with others who are only a few feet away.
- Additional Gum Support
Contrary to common assumptions, your teeth aren’t the only aspect of oral health to be concerned about. Your gums are one of the most ignored aspects of oral hygiene.
Unfortunately, neglecting your gums over an extended length of time can result in gum disorders including gingivitis and periodontitis.
The gum tissues that surround your teeth are affected by gingivitis. Gingivitis symptoms include swelling and soreness to the touch of your gums.
Periodontitis, on the other hand, is a considerably more dangerous condition. It’s a type of gum disease that eats away at the bones and tissues beneath your gums. This can cause your teeth to fall out much earlier than they should.
Flossing every day can help you avoid developing either of these debilitating gum diseases. It will remove the tartar and microorganisms that cause the infection.
- Lessening the Risk of Respiratory Disease
Flossing, believe it or not, has been demonstrated in research to reduce your chances of being diagnosed with respiratory disease.
Respiratory disorders come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Asthma, emphysema, pneumonia, bronchitis, COPD, and other respiratory diseases may be present.
While dental health hasn’t been proven to cause some of these respiratory ailments, keeping your mouth clean can help you avoid them. This is particularly true for people who have chronic bronchitis.
Bronchitis usually starts when bacteria get into your throat and cause problems with your respiratory system. That bacteria begins in your mouth and progresses to the back of your throat over time.
The more active you are in flossing and keeping your mouth clean, the less likely you are to develop certain respiratory infections.
That isn’t to say that flossing is the only thing that can keep you from getting a respiratory infection. Brushing twice a day, flossing twice a day, and using antiseptic mouthwash multiple times a day are all necessary to kill bacteria.
How to achieve flawless floss.
Some individuals believe they don’t have time to floss, yet it only takes a few minutes once you get the hang of it. If you only floss once a day, it’s better to do it right before bedtime. Because there is less saliva in your mouth while you sleep, plaque becomes more concentrated and potentially more damaging. If you’ve never mastered proper flossing techniques, here’s a step-by-step guide with some simple recommendations for performing a fantastic job.
- Trim a piece of floss to 18 inches in length.
Wind it around both hands’ middle fingers, leaving about a three- or four-inch gap. You’ll be able to arrange the floss between your teeth using different combinations of your thumbs and index fingers in all parts of your mouth.
TIP: Try not to snap the floss into your gums as you insert it, even if the gap is small. It’s best to use a side-to-side sawing motion here, but only when gently slipping the floss between the teeth.
- Each space between your teeth has two sides, and you must floss each side separately to avoid injuring the triangle of gum tissue between your teeth.
Run the floss up and down the tooth’s surface, making sure to go all the way down to the gum line and then up to the highest point of contact between the teeth. Apply pressure away from the gum triangle, allowing the floss to curve around the side of the tooth, making the letter “C.”
TIP: Keep your fingers as close to the front and back of the tooth as possible to ensure that both fingers move in sync.
- Next, slide your fingers across to the other side of the space from the top contact area between the teeth. Apply pressure in the other way with your fingertips and repeat.
- Remove the floss from between the teeth by sliding it out. If it’s ragged or brownish, that’s a positive sign: plaque is being removed! Take up the used floss on the other finger and unwind a little new floss from the “dispenser” finger.
- Rep the procedure on the next gap between your teeth. Work your way around the mouth, paying special attention to the back surfaces of the last molars.
If the two-finger approach isn’t working for you, here’s another way to floss: Simply make a large loop with the same quantity of floss, lay all of your fingers (except your thumbs) within the loop, and work it around your teeth with your index and thumbs. The rest of the steps are the same.
Once you’ve mastered the basics, you may go out and attempt flavoured, waxed, and wider-width flosses. Waxed floss may slip more readily into tighter gaps between teeth or restorations for certain people, but it won’t make that delightful “squeak” while cleaning. Others prefer to clean around bridgework with wide floss. However, whatever method works best for you, the most important thing is to keep going!