Brushing your teeth and visiting your dentist for regular cleanings and exams are important tasks for a healthy smile. Unfortunately, most dentists believe that is not enough to protect your oral health. Flossing is also imperative for the look and underlying health of your mouth, teeth, and gums, but you may not realize the benefits of this simple task. Here are a few fascinating facts about flossing that you need to know:
Once, Not Twice, a Day
Dentists recommend brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes at a time. Although it will not hurt, flossing twice a day is not actually necessary.
You should floss at least once a day to effectively remove food particles and bacteria from areas of your mouth the toothbrush cannot reach, such as behind and in between your teeth and gums.
Children Should Floss, Too
If you are a parent, you have probably discussed the importance of brushing teeth with your child. However, you must also educate your child on the benefits of flossing.
Your child should begin brushing as soon as they develop their first tooth. In addition, they should start flossing, with your assistance, as soon as they develop two teeth that are touching.
To make the process fun, educational, and effective, purchase floss in different colors or flossers that are shaped like animals or favorite characters.
Flossing Too Hard Can Do More Damage than Good
If you floss each day, you may think you are staying on top of your oral health. Unfortunately, improper use of your floss can cause more harm than good.
Moving the floss in between your teeth is necessary, but forcing it can irritate or even cut your gum tissue. If you are struggling to move the floss in the space between your teeth, ask your dentist to recommend a thinner floss. This will prevent you from damaging your gum tissue.
Avoid sawing the floss between your teeth, as well. A hard sawing motion will be harsh on your tooth enamel. Constant sawing can weaken the enamel, increasing your risk of stains, cavities, and even decay.
For the best results, move the floss in between your teeth in a "C" motion. This curved movement will remove food and bacteria from in between the teeth without harming tooth enamel or your gum tissue.
Flossing should be a priority for your oral health, but it is also essential to the look of your smile. Knowing these flossing facts will help you realize the imperative nature of flossing. Contact your local family dentist for more information and assistance.