The purpose of flossing is to finish the job that tooth brushing starts. Even the best toothbrush can’t get in the crevices between teeth where bacteria-filled plaque can collect and eventually lead to gum disease.
Of course, your hygienist will thoroughly floss your teeth during your semi-annual cleanings. But you need to support your oral health with good hygiene habits between visits, which includes flossing once a day.
Common Flossing Mistakes
Most people have a general idea why they need to floss and how to do it, but it’s easy to get a little too relaxed as time goes by. There are frequent flossing mistakes that many people make, so here are some pointers to help make sure your efforts are productive:
- Flossing without a plan – If you are flossing haphazardly, you may be missing entire sections of your mouth. Choose a strategy that works well for you; you may want to floss in quadrants, or you might prefer doing all your bottom teeth then switch to the top teeth. Whatever method you choose, just be consistent, and you’ll find that flossing becomes second-nature.
- Not flossing both sides of a tooth – While flossing helps your gum health, its primary purpose is to clean plaque from the crevices between teeth. So, when you work the floss between teeth, make sure you clean one tooth thoroughly, then switch to the other tooth.
- Not changing floss between teeth – Floss works by grabbing the plaque between teeth and carrying it away. If you don’t change to a new length of floss every time you move to a new tooth, you’re just moving the plaque around in your mouth. Floss is inexpensive, so don’t worry about conserving it!
Call Your Hershey PA Dentist to Learn More
If it’s time for a cleaning or you aren’t sure you’re flossing correctly, please call us. Dr. Wes Davis and our team are here to support you in your efforts to maintain a healthy smile.