Are you guilty of neglecting to floss your teeth as part of your oral hygiene regime? Many people fall into this trap, which can lead to bigger problems down the line. Read on to learn why flossing is so important and our tips for how to floss properly!
To floss using dental floss, follow the simple steps below:
You should only use a piece of floss once before throwing it away, as it can hold bacteria (and you don’t want to put that back into your mouth!)
If you have braces, flossing is still an important part of your oral hygiene routine. However, you will need to be a bit more careful, as floss can tear and get stuck in your braces.
A good alternative to traditional dental floss for those with braces is using an air or water flosser, which are machines that push debris out from between the teeth using air or water pressure, which minimises the risk of losing floss in your braces.
If you have a dental bridge, using a floss threader can make it easier to get around your bridge. This allows you to thread the floss through the gap in your bridge where you can floss as you would normally.
Similarly for those with braces, water or air flossers are a great alternative to help reach difficult places.
Flossing is important because it:
Crucially, your floss can reach parts of your mouth that a toothbrush can’t always reach properly. It removes plaque and food particles between your teeth and along the gum line, making it a critical step in your dental hygiene routine.
You should aim to floss at least once a day (before bedtime) - but ideally, brush and floss your teeth twice a day.
Some of the negative impacts you might face if you don’t floss include
If you’re one of the many Australians who don’t currently floss, don’t stress - it’s not too late to start flossing and minimise any future damage to your teeth and gums.
Parents should begin flossing their teeth as soon as they have at least two neighbouring teeth that touch side by side, which is usually around age 2.
Children are usually able to begin flossing on their own once their fine motor skills begin to develop, however some assistance may be required. Floss picks can be helpful for little hands to make flossing easier.
Contrary to the order in which some people perform their teeth cleaning routine, it’s better to floss before you brush to loosen particles and debris from the teeth, then brush away with your toothbrush.
In recent years, developments in technology have meant we now have a range of methods to floss our teeth, providing greater accessibility and convenience. Some alternative methods of flossing you might like to explore outside of typical dental floss or tape include:
Flosser or not, it’s important to stay on top of your dental hygiene by attending check-ups and professional cleans at least twice a year. If you need a hand working flossing into your routine, our friendly dentists at Maven Dental are here to help!
Book your next dental check-up now!