Flossing is a vital part of your daily oral hygiene routine, and although it may be tempting to skip it there are several good reasons why you shouldn’t, and your teeth will thank you by sticking around for longer.
Simply put, flossing is essential because it helps to remove food debris that can get caught between teeth. Mouths are full of bacteria called Streptococcus mutans which love to feed off the food particles left in your mouth, and in doing so they form a film over the teeth which is called plaque.
Acid is formed as a byproduct of this process and this attacks teeth causing them to de-mineralize, leaving them more susceptible to decay.
The contact areas between teeth are very vulnerable to decay as plaque is most likely to begin forming here, and if not removed within 48 hours will start to harden into tartar. If plaque and tartar are allowed to build up between teeth then it becomes far more likely that you will develop gum disease which causes the gums to become infected and to begin pulling away from your teeth.
Flossing is the best way to remove plaque before it hardens and can actually make your smile look brighter as it gets into the areas which are hard to reach with a toothbrush.
Your breath will also be fresher as there will be no food slowly rotting in between your teeth. Flossing your teeth also makes you more aware of what’s happening in your mouth so that you can pick up any small changes that might occur and get them treated before they become more serious.
Types of Floss
There are lots of different types of floss on the markets and all are effective if used properly, so it’s down to personal preference as to which feels the most comfortable.
Most people make the mistake of being too stingy with their floss as you need to break off about 18 inches in length, and then wind each end around your middle fingers.
You can then slide a section of the floss between your teeth, wrapping the floss right around as you slide it up from the gum line to the incisal edge. Use a fresh section of floss for each tooth.
It’s also possible to buy electric flossers and soft rubber interdental flossers, so keep experimenting until you find a product which works well for you. It might seem a hassle to floss but it’s well worth the effort as having a great oral hygiene routine gives you a brighter and fresher smile and could save you time and money in the long run.
If you are worried about doing it correctly then ask us to show you how.
Call us at (713) 807-9877 or use the button below to Ask a Question or Schedule Your Appointment to have Dr. Jonathan Penchas or one of his expert staff examine your teeth.