Monday, June 1, 2015

No More Excuses! Make Flossing a Part of Your Daily Routine

Flossing is one of the most important steps when it comes to your oral health.

 So, why do so many people exclude it from their daily routine?  Here’s a list of top excuses for avoiding the floss and your dentist’s responses.

Excuse #1:  Food doesn’t get stuck in my teeth
While flossing does help to remove food that gets wedged between your teeth, it is not the primary reason you should be making it a part of your daily routine.  Flossing helps get rid of plaque, the sticky bacterial film that forms along your gum line and between your teeth.  Everyone gets plaque and it can only be removed by flossing or a cleaning from your dentist so it’s important to make it a part of your at-home routine. Flossing daily also helps to prevent gum disease and tooth loss.

Excuse #2:  I don’t know how to floss
Flossing correctly can be a difficult task.  That doesn’t mean you should avoid it.

The American Dental Association gives these tips for flossing correctly:
  • Use 18 inches of floss. Wrap most of it around the middle finger of one hand, the rest around your other middle finger.
  • Grasp the string tightly between your thumb and forefinger, and use a rubbing motion to guide it between teeth.
  • When the floss reaches the gum line, form a C to follow the shape of the tooth.
  • Hold the strand firmly against the tooth, and move it gently up and down.
  • Repeat with the other tooth, and then repeat the entire process with the rest of your teeth.
  • Use fresh sections of floss as you go.
  • Remember to floss between all of your teeth, including the back of your last molars to prevent gum disease and decay.
Excuse #3:  Flossing is too hard for me
There are other tools that can be substituted for regular floss if you have trouble reaching the back of your mouth.  Ask your dentist about using one of the following:
  • plastic, disposable, Y-shaped flossers that allow for extra reach
  • small, round brushes
  • pointed, rubber tips
  • wooden or plastic pics (called interdental cleaners)
Excuse #4:  I don’t have time to floss
Everyone should floss at least once per day, however, it is recommended that you floss twice per day.

Make it a part of your morning and night routine.  Store your floss next to your toothbrush and toothpaste as a reminder so you don’t forget.

Flossing can be done on the go as well.  Keep some floss in your car to use while your stuck in traffic or keep some in your desk at work to use after lunch.  The most important thing is to find a time for flossing in your daily routine that works best for you!

Excuse #5:  Flossing hurts
Flossing shouldn’t be a painful experience.  If your gums bleed or hurt while you are flossing, it could be a sign of a bigger problem such as gingivitis or gum disease.  Even if this occurs you shouldn’t stop flossing all together.

If you brush and floss daily, the bleeding and pain should go away in less than 2 weeks. If it doesn’t, it is time to see your dentist.

Excuse #6:  My teeth are too close together
Waxed or glide floss is a good alternative if your teeth are close together.  A threader or loop could work for you if you have recessed gums, gaps between your teeth, or braces.  If your floss shreds, this could be a sign of a cavity or another problem with your dental work.  Tell your dentist if this issue is happening to you.


From WebMD


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