Flossing is important, we all know this. But knowing how to floss properly is essential. Flossing removes plaque and food debris from stubborn and hard-to-reach places between the teeth to prevent tooth decay and other dental and health complications. To maintain a clean and healthy mouth, we recommend flossing daily.
How to Floss: 5 Easy Steps
With a routine flossing habit, you can save tons of money in dental fees and corrective procedures (e.g., cavity fillings and root canals). Each day when you floss, use these simple steps to clean between your teeth and prevent decay from forming in unreachable places:
- Using about 18-20 inches of floss, wrap most of the ends around each middle finger. Leave open about 1-2 inches of floss between your fingers to use between the teeth.
- Holding the floss firmly between your index fingers and thumbs, glide the floss gently in an up-and-down motion between each tooth.
- Floss below the gumline by carefully sliding the floss around the base of each tooth. Be careful not to force the floss or snap it between your teeth as this can injure your gum tissue.
- As you clean between each tooth, use clean sections of the floss.
- When removing the floss from between the teeth, use a gentle back-and-forth movement and pull the floss away from your teeth.
Things to Watch For When Flossing
Flossing is important, yes. But flossing the right way is a must. If you notice symptoms or pain while flossing, check with your dentist to see if any underlying issues may be the cause. Severe symptoms include:
- Inflamed or painful gums
- Pus or discharge around the gums
- Tooth or gum sensitivity
- Changes to your teeth alignment
If you floss regularly, you may prevent a variety of more complicated conditions. Therefore, it’s especially necessary to floss after each meal, take your time, and be gentle with your teeth and gums. If you have more specific questions about how to floss or any other personal dental concerns, schedule your next appointment at either one of our dental offices in Southfield or Detroit.