Flossing is an important step in keeping your teeth free of cavities. Plaque and debris can settle between your teeth, allowing the bacteria to wear away at the enamel. You may not even be able to see these cavities until the damage is severe. In fact, you may only find out about them during a dental exam. Being told you need dental work is never a good surprise. Worse still, untreated cavities and decay and lead to the need for root canal therapy.
Water Pick vs. Manual Flossing
Since you know that flossing is important, you will want to do the best you can at the task. There are several different methods you can use. Some people use an air pick or a water pick to clean between teeth without the need to fit floss between their teeth at all. This can be especially helpful to those with braces. A flosser tool can hold floss for you and make it easier to get to hard-to-reach areas. For some people, the best way is the old-fashioned method of holding the floss between their hands and manually removing offending debris.
Whichever method you choose, make sure to do the job properly. You want to clear plaque from all surfaces of your teeth. Makes sure to move along the edge of each tooth to dislodge anything that might be there. Sliding between the two without touching isnt going to be as effective. If you leave things behind, it is almost as bad as not flossing at all.
If you are doing it manually, use about 18 inches of floss. Form a c shape around one tooth and slide down into the space between. Make sure not to skip any teeth. It can sometimes be difficult to work on molars, as they are so far back in your mouth, but it is important to give every tooth equal attention.
Types of Dental Floss
You will also want to choose the right type of floss for the job. Many people have their own preferences, but many people find that a waxed floss will move more smoothly. The wax also keeps the floss from becoming frayed and tattered, running the risk of getting trapped between the teeth itself. Many dentists will recommend Glide brand, as it is well known for staying in one piece throughout the entire process. On the other hand, the wax may make it more difficult to fit between tight spaces, so unwaxed might be a better option if your teeth are tightly packed.
If you find having thread in your mouth to be unappetizing, there are several brands of flavored floss available. These can be helpful in establishing good oral hygiene habits in children, making the experience more entertaining and exciting than it normally would be.
Many people make the mistake of skipping on flossing, finding it too much of a hassle or thinking that brushing alone is sufficient to keep teeth healthy. Make sure you care for every surface of your teeth by flossing once a day. When you do, make sure you do it right!