With proper care, your teeth and gums can stay healthy throughout your life. The healthier your smile is, the less risk you have for tooth decay and periodontal disease. While most everyone brushes their teeth daily, not many people floss as regularly as they brush. If you brush your teeth every day and visit the dentist regularly, is flossing every day really necessary?
What Is Flossing?
Flossing is an important oral hygiene habit. It cleans and removes food buildup and plaque from the surfaces of your teeth that are hard to reach with a toothbrush. If you don’t stay on top of it, food buildup and plaque can quickly become more significant problems that cause tooth decay, gum disease, and inflammation in your mouth.
That’s because plaque contains bacteria that feed on leftover food or sugar in your mouth, releasing an acid that can eat away at the outer shell of your teeth and cause cavities. If it isn’t removed, plaque hardens into a rough substance known as tartar, which collects along your gum line, causing inflammation and gum disease. Once tartar forms, it can only be removed by your dentist.
The American Dental Association recommends flossing at least once per day and picking a time of day when you can devote an extra couple of minutes to your dental care. Of course, it isn’t enough to simply floss; it’s also important to floss correctly. Too much pressure could damage the tissue between your teeth, and if you’re too gentle, you might not get all the plaque buildup.
Different Ways to Floss
It’s important to choose a method There are several ways to floss, including:
Traditional dental floss: Traditional or manual flossing involves using waxed or non-waxed string sections to floss. Wax string floss is often easier to use because it is made to glide effortlessly between teeth. Traditional floss is a quick, easy and effective way of removing plaque. It is cost-effective, can be taken anywhere, and can be bought almost anywhere.
Waterpik: Also known as a water flosser, dental water jets, or oral irrigators, Waterpik uses a pressurized stream of pulsating water to clean away food particles, bacteria, and plaque between the teeth and under the gumline. A Waterpik may be easier to use than standard floss for people with arthritis, braces, crowns, dental implants, non-removable bridgework, or for anyone who finds string floss challenging to maneuver and work with.
Interproximal brushes: Also referred to as interdental cleaning brushes, interproximal brushes are tiny toothbrushes specially designed to clean between teeth. They come in different sizes, so you can select one that works best for the spacing size between your teeth. Interproximal brushes are effective, work well with bridges and braces, and are easier to use, especially if you have joint problems or limited mobility.
Importance of Flossing for Your Dental Health
Regular flossing comes with several benefits, such as:
Prevents cavities and gum disease: Flossing is the only way to remove plaque and bacteria between your teeth, keeping plaque and tartar buildup at bay keeps cavities and gum disease from forming.
Flossing reduces bad breath: Bad breath (halitosis) is a common problem. But flossing is one of the tools you can use to keep bad breath away.
Help your overall health: Good oral hygiene doesn’t only benefit your teeth and gums; it benefits your overall health too. Gum disease is linked to various illnesses, including heart disease. By preventing gum disease, flossing helps protect your overall health.
Family Dental Care in Independence, KY
Daily flossing along with regular brushing is a simple, low-cost way to help boost your oral hygiene and overall health. To ensure good oral health, you must keep a good oral hygiene routine and come for regular dental exams and cleaning at Peter Family and Cosmetic Dentistry. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.