Maintaining a daily oral hygiene routine is essential for good oral health and overall health. Many patients remember to brush their teeth at least twice every day, but research suggests only 30% of people floss daily.
Why does flossing matter?
Brushing removes plaque and food debris from the surface of your teeth, but what about between your teeth? A brush can’t clean these tight spaces. Using floss to remove plaque from between your teeth and under your gum line decreases your risk for gum disease, bad breath, and cavities.
How many times should you floss per day?
While you should brush at least twice a day (this will be more if you wear braces or clear aligners), most people only need to floss once a day. Flossing at night prevents debris from sitting in your mouth overnight as you sleep. However, the ideal time of day to floss is whenever you will consistently make the time to floss properly. If you have the time and patience, gently flossing after each meal can also benefit your oral health.
What does proper flossing look like?
Flossing properly will clean your teeth and help protect your gums. If you’re using regular string floss, break off around 18 inches and wind most of it around one of your middle fingers. Wind what’s left around your opposite hand’s middle finger. This is where you’ll wind the used part of the floss. With a gentle rubbing “C” motion, work the floss between your teeth with your forefingers and thumb. Rub the floss against the tooth and push it under your gums. Use a clean segment of the floss for each tooth.
Using a water flosser utilizes pressurized water to stimulate bloodflow in your gums and push out hard-to-reach debris. This tool can be especially helpful if you wear braces, have a dental bridge, or struggle with limited mobility.
Maintain Routine Visits to Dental Health Associates in Wolcott, CT
Brushing and flossing daily will help keep your oral health in great shape. However, you still need to visit the dentist for regular cleanings and exams! We can also answer additional questions you have about flossing, tooth or gum problems, and anything else dental-related. If you want to schedule an appointment with one of our dentists, please contact us today!