The Top 5 Flossing Questions
1. Why should I floss? Brushing is a very important part of keeping your teeth healthy, but it can not do everything. Flossing is necessary to clean the areas between teeth that brushing can not reach. The floss can reach between teeth and remove plaque and debris that get stuck to the tooth. Flossing also helps to polish the teeth and help control bad breath.
2. How often should I floss? You should floss for about 2 to 3 minutes once a day. The best time of day to floss is at nighttime, before you go to bed, but anytime you can fit it into your schedule is better than not flossing at all.
3. What is the proper flossing technique? There are 2 acceptable methods of flossing. The spool method has you take an 18-inch piece of floss and wrap the bulk of it lightly around your middle finger. Wind the rest of your floss around your finger on your opposite hand, and use this finger to take up the floss as it becomes spoiled. The loop method has you also take an 18-inch piece of floss and tie it in a circle, secured with three knots. After placing all of your fingers, except your thumb inside the loop, use your index fingers to guide the floss through the lower teeth and your thumbs to guide the floss through the upper teeth. The loop method is good for those people who may have limited dexterity.
4. Which kind of floss should I use? There are many types of floss that you can purchase, and each may benefit different types of people. Woven floss is the best floss for people without any abnormal dental issues. This floss is excellent at catching all the debris and plaque that may be between your teeth. Waxed floss is best for people who do not have a lot of space between their teeth, or restorations. It will fit between the teeth much easier. While wide floss, sometimes called dental tape, is best for people with a lot of bridge work or a lot of space between their teeth.
5. Should I use a waterpick? A waterpick can be used to remove around braces in places that regular brushing and flossing cannot reach, but it should not be used as a substitute for brushing or flossing. Waterpicks are not able to remove plaque from teeth, and that is the bacteria that can lead to tooth decay. Sometimes, people with gum disease may want to use a waterpick with an antibacterial agent in the reservoir.
For more questions, or to have our hygienists demonstrate our flossing techniques, schedule a cleaning by calling 701-258-1321. Visit our website www.thesmilecenter.com for more information.