Things that our patients want to know
Brushing our teeth removes food particles, plaque, and bacteria from all outer tooth surfaces. Brushing cannot reach in between the teeth. Unfortunately, there is no other easier way to reach these areas that are highly susceptible to dental decay and gum disease. Not flossing may be the main reason for bad breath.
Daily flossing (at night before going to sleep) is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gumline. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces, it disrupts plaque colonies from building up, preventing damage to the gums, teeth, and bone.
Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva. The bacteria produce toxins (acids) that cause cavities and irritate and inflame the gums. Also, when plaque is not removed above and below the gumline, it hardens and turns into calculus (tartar). This will further irritate and inflame the gums and can slowly destroy the bone. This is the beginning of periodontal disease.
How to floss properly:
- Take 40-50cm of dental floss and wrap it around your index fingers, leaving about 20cm of floss between the hands.
- Using your middlefingers to guide the floss, gently insert the floss between teeth using a sawing motion.
- Curve the floss into a “C” shape around each tooth and under the gumline. Gently move the floss up and down, cleaning the side of each tooth.
Floss holders are recommended if you have difficulty using conventional floss.
Daily flossing will help you keep a healthy, beautiful smile for life!
Only floss teeth that you want to keep!
Why is it important to use dental floss?