While flossing is necessary to preserve your teeth and gums, you don't want to floss the wrong way. Otherwise, you will not receive the full benefits of flossing. The following information will give you further information on what you need to do to avoid flossing your teeth the wrong way.
Learn the Correct Way to Floss First
If you do not floss your teeth correctly, you should not floss at all. Doing so can do some real damage to your gums. However, that does not mean you really should not floss. We can tell if you have been cleaning between your teeth. It just means you need to make sure you are doing it right. To better understand how to use floss, you need to review the structure of a tooth. The tooth features 5 surfaces, 3 of which your toothbrush can clean. These surfaces include the back, top or bottom, or front. Two of the surfaces need to be flossed – the sides that lie next to the other teeth. If you use a sawing motion when using the floss or floss to aggressively, you will damage the gums and teeth.
How to Floss and Clean Between the Teeth
To use floss correctly, you need to wind most of the floss around the middle fingers and leave about 2 inches of the string for flossing. Begin by breaking about 24 inches of floss from its container. Hold the floss tautly with the thumbs and index fingers before placing it between the teeth. Glide the floss gently in an up-and-down motion, rubbing it against on both of the sides of each tooth. Never glide the string into the gum tissue, as it can bruise or scratch it. As the floss approaches the gums, you need to curve it at the tooth's base. Repeat these steps, going from tooth to tooth. Always use a new, clean section of floss as you do so. If you floss with brackets on your teeth, expect to take an extra 15 minutes. Use a waxed floss to prevent any sticking or tearing. You can support regular flossing by using a water flosser, especially if you wear braces.
We can demonstrate how you should be flossing your teeth. If you want to make a commitment to better dental care, we can help you meet your brushing and flossing requirements. If you have not done so already, give our office a call for an appointment. We can schedule a cleaning and exam at our convenience anytime.
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