When it comes to taking care of our teeth, there are many different options available. Dental care products include toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, whitening strips, tongue scrapers, and of course plain old dental floss.
Statistics show that more people brush then floss. A survey found that 69 percent of Americans brush their teeth at least twice a day. The amount of people who floss is much lower, with 41 percent of Americans admitting to flossing at least once a day.
While it may not seem necessary to floss your teeth after a good brushing has left your mouth feeling minty fresh, flossing should be just as much of a priority as brushing. Dental floss reaches the areas in between the teeth that the toothbrush cannot. This removes plaque and promotes gum and tooth health.
Why is it that Americans are not as eager to take the time to floss? Dentist Mark Burhenne suggests that “the problem with flossing is there is no instant gratification, no clearly defined reward. People don’t think it’s working.” Burhenne then offers tips to help you make flossing a habit.
Flossing may not make your teeth instantly feel cleaner like brushing does, but – just like with brushing – choosing not to floss can have serious consequences. Flossing helps guard you against gum disease and tooth loss.
To make flossing an easier, more comfortable experience, here a few solutions to common complaints regarding flossing:
#1: I don’t know how to floss.
Learning to floss can take practice, but it is worth the effort. This video from the American Dental Association shows you the proper way to floss.
#2: I find using string floss difficult.
If you find using strung floss difficult, there are many other inter-dental options available. These include products such as floss sticks or the Waterpik.
#3: The feeling of floss in between my teeth is uncomfortable.
There are several different types of floss.PTFE floss, nylon floss, and waxed floss are a few examples. You may want to try out different types of floss to see which type feels the most comfortable to you.
#4: I don’t have time to floss.
It is important that you take your time while flossing, but doing so does not have take an extensive amount of time. If you do not enjoy flossing because you find that it takes a long time, you may want to try this one minute flossing technique.
Just as you make time to brush, it is important to set aside a time to floss your teeth. Whether this is the in the morning or evening, it may help you to choose a specific time of day to floss and stick to it so that you create a routine.
Feel free to contact our office with any questions or concerns that you may have about flossing.
Take care of your smile!