According to the American Dental Association, you should be flossing your teeth at least once a day. Whether you do it at night or in the morning is up to you, but there are plenty of benefits to remaining consistent. Not only does flossing help remove excess plaque and bacteria from between your teeth, but it also helps prevent periodontal disease and gum decay. However, contrary to popular belief, not all floss is the same, and there are some things to keep in mind. If you’re not sure what type of floss to go with, ask your dental team at Dobson Ranch Dental Care. Then, follow these do’s and don’ts to get the most out of your flossing habit.
DO FLOSS EVERY DAY
As we mentioned above, flossing every day is the best way to get the most out of this practice. When you floss, you’ll need about an 18-inch strand to get through your entire mouth. This means you should be generous with the floss tape and don’t be shy to use more if you need it. According to WebMD, each time you floss, you remove up to 40% of the plaque that can cause gum disease and cavities. Therefore, being generous with both your floss strand and how many times you floss per day is never a bad idea.
DO USE A NEW SECTION OF FLOSS FOR EACH TOOTH
Not sure why you need so much floss? Well, it’s because you need a new section of it for every tooth. Flossing between different teeth with the same section spreads plaque and bacteria rather than removing them. The goal of flossing is to prevent dental health issues, but if you don’t change the section of floss for each tooth, you could be doing more harm than good. So, the next time you stand in front of the mirror, make sure you use enough floss for all your teeth.
DON’T FORCE THE FLOSS
Too many people don’t realize their flossing technique isn’t effective. With that being said, you’ll want to avoid snapping or forcing the floss between your teeth. Doing so might result in a receding gum line, bleeding, and discomfort. Instead, gently guide the floss between each tooth with slight pressure. Wrap the floss around the tooth and then get between the gum and the tooth. This will help clear out any bacteria and plaque that’s below the gum line without damaging the soft tissue.
DON’T STOP IF YOU SEE BLEEDING
It sounds counterintuitive, but you should definitely continue flossing even if your gums start to bleed. Swollen and bleeding gums are some of the first signs of gingivitis. So, don’t be afraid of the blood. Instead, gently floss between each tooth and remain consistent from day to day. Keeping up with this routine will help reduce the swelling, and eventually, the bleeding will stop. However, in rare cases, the bleeding can get worse. In this case, you’ll want to make an appointment with our office right away.
DO COME SEE US
Are you worried about your age and what that means for your dental health? Then come see the dentists at Dobson Ranch Dental Care. Our team of specialists is here to walk you through regular exams and cleanings, periodontal treatment, root canal therapy, and so much more. We proudly serve residents throughout Mesa, AZ, so request an appointment today by calling (480) 838-8558.