Regular flossing is essential for maintaining good oral hygiene. Plaque can accumulate between your teeth and along your gum line if you neglect to floss. This over time raises your risk of gum disease and tooth decay.
The American Dental Association (ADA) asserts that the use of interdental cleaners like floss is essential for eliminating plaque and other debris from hard-to-reach places.
Continue reading to discover the main advantages of flossing as well as when and how often you should do it. We also provide alternatives to floss if you’re seeking for something to clean between your teeth
- Gets rid of plaque
- Flossing Can Help You to Have Fresh Breath
- Helps prevent gum disease
- Reduces the risk of cavities
- Floss Is a Lot Cheaper Than Oral Surgery
- May help your heart health
1 Gets rid of plaque
Plaque is a colourless, sticky film that builds up on your teeth, in their spaces, and along the gum line. Plaque shouldn’t stay in your mouth for very long even if it can be hard to see.
When germs in your mouth combine with starchy or sugary meals and beverages, plaque builds on and around your teeth. Acids produced by these bacteria break down carbs. The bacteria, acids, and carbohydrates in food can combine to produce a film of plaque on and near your teeth and gumline if you don’t clean your teeth.
Acids that destroy your tooth enamel can be released by the microorganisms in plaque. Cavities may develop throughout time if these acids are not eliminated by brushing and flossing.
Additionally, plaque can accumulate along your gumline, harden, and become tartar. According to the ADA, this increases your risk of acquiring gum disease.
Regular flossing can aid in removing plaque that has amassed between your teeth as well as food particles from the area surrounding your teeth.
Fresher breath can result from flossing. Halitosis, often known as bad breath, is frequently brought on by the accumulation of food particles and plaque in the spaces between teeth and along the gum line. With just a toothbrush, it’s challenging to go to these places.
Plaque, germs, and food particles that have been stuck in these difficult-to-reach places can be removed by flossing. Flossing can assist in reducing or eradicating bad breath by removing these sources of odor-causing germs. Additionally, it encourages general improved dental hygiene, which is crucial for preserving fresh breath.
It’s important to remember that while flossing can assist with bad breath, it’s also important to follow a whole oral care regimen that includes frequent tooth brushing, tongue cleansing, and mouthwash use. In order to identify and treat the underlying reason of persistent bad breath, it’s also advised that you speak with a dentist or other healthcare provider.
3 Helps prevent gum disease
The initial stage of gum disease is gingivitis. Inflammation around the gums is one of the earliest indications of gingivitis. When you clean or floss your teeth, your gums could also bleed.
Gingivitis can develop into periodontitis, a more dangerous condition, if it is not treated. Your gums may start to move away from your teeth or recede as a result of this. Your teeth may grow loose and lose their bone support. Periodontitis might result in an inflammatory reaction throughout your body if it is not addressed.
Gum disease can be lessened by brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once a day. Another way to maintain healthy gums is to have professional cleanings performed by your dentist every six months.
4 Reduces the risk of cavities
Cavities, which occur from tooth decay, are small openings or holes in the enamel, the hard outer layer of your teeth.
Even while this procedure takes time, your chance of getting a cavity increases the more plaque you have on your teeth’s enamel.
By removing plaque accumulation and food fragments that are hidden between your teeth on a daily basis, flossing can help prevent tooth decay.
Floss Is a Lot Cheaper Than Oral Surgery
Flossing is generally much more affordable than undergoing oral surgery. Flossing is a simple and cost-effective preventive measure that can help maintain good oral health and prevent various dental issues.
Regular flossing, along with proper brushing and dental check-ups, can significantly reduce the risk of developing oral health problems such as gum disease and tooth decay. These preventive measures can potentially save you from needing more extensive and costly dental treatments, including oral surgery.
May help your heart health
Your teeth, gums, and mouth all benefit from good dental hygiene. Your heart’s health could also benefit from it.
A significant 2019 study found that participants who practised good dental hygiene had a lower risk of atrial fibrillation and heart failure.
However, according to the American Heart Association (Reliable Source), the relationship between oral health and heart health may really be more closely related to the relationship between oral health and overall body health.
Whatever the case, flossing your teeth is a quick and affordable way to improve both your oral and general health.
Here are steps to floss your teeth properly:
- Start with a piece of floss: Cut a piece of dental floss around 18 inches long. Wrap most of it around your middle fingers, leaving about 2 inches to work with.
- Hold the floss: Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and index fingers. Gently glide it between your teeth using a back-and-forth motion.
- Curve the floss: Curve the floss into a C-shape around each tooth, and slide it gently beneath the gumline. Be careful not to snap or force the floss, as it can harm your gums.
- Clean both sides: Rub the floss against the tooth in an up-and-down motion, cleaning both sides of the tooth. Ensure you go all the way down to the gumline.
- Use a fresh section: As you move to the next tooth, unwind a fresh section of floss from your fingers. Repeat the process for each tooth, using a clean section of floss for each space.
- Rinse and dispose: After flossing, rinse your mouth with water to remove any dislodged debris. Dispose of the used floss in a trash can.
To keep your mouth as healthy as possible, floss at least once per day, preferably right before bed. Alternatives like floss picks or water flossers might be utilised if you’re new to flossing or find it difficult to use regular floss. To efficiently clean in between your teeth and along the gumline, always be careful and thorough. Your teeth and gums will remain healthy with regular flossing, brushing, and dental checkups.
Although it may come as a surprise, a study has shown that flossing before brushing with fluoride toothpaste improves the removal of interdental plaque more than the reverse. Additionally, more fluoride is retained between teeth when flossing is done before brushing.
The soreness you experience is typically caused by your teeth being accustomed to being cleaned properly. This is particularly crucial when it comes to gingivitis. It will develop into periodontitis if it is not appropriately treated in its early stages. Don’t forget to use gentle movements and talk to your dentist.
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