If you’re brushing your teeth without flossing, you’re not finishing the job! While brushing is a great way to remove tartar, plaque, food debris, and oral bacteria, it is not completely enough to clean your mouth on its own.
This is because a simple brushing cannot reach far enough in-between the teeth. Flossing is the only way to remove plaque and bacteria from areas in between your gums and teeth. This is often a challenge for many patients, particularly when it comes to flossing your back teeth. Here are a few tips and tricks from the team at The Good Dentist that will make flossing your teeth a bit easier:
Proper flossing technique is critical for cleaning all your teeth, especially the rear molars. To floss, you’ll want to dispense about 18-24 inches of dental floss from your container. Then, wrap the ends around your index and middle fingers.
Pull the floss between each of your teeth in a “sawing” motion to dislodge debris and clean the surface of the tooth. Need an example? This video from eHowhealth provides a great visual of proper flossing technique.
When it’s time to move onto your rear teeth, it can be helpful to use a slightly longer piece of floss. Unwind the floss from your fingers somewhat, so that you can use the longer length for more maneuverability.
If you are having trouble flossing your back teeth due to issues with manual dexterity or a strong gag reflex, a floss pick may be a viable alternative to traditional floss.
Floss picks use a hard, plastic head with a piece of floss stretched between its two tips, and they have been proven to be nearly as effective as traditional floss at safeguarding the health of your gums, so they are a viable alternative if you are struggling with proper flossing technique.
Water flossers, such as the widely-known WaterPik, have been proven to be very effective at removing plaque from the teeth. If you are having problems flossing your rear teeth with traditional dental floss or a floss pick, a water flosser may be a good option for you.
Whether you use traditional dental floss, floss picks, or even a water flosser like the WaterPik, the most important thing to do is floss regularly with your chosen product. Regular flossing along with proper brushing is the single best way to protect your oral health.
Have more questions about flossing? Contact us now to speak with our knowledgeable team or schedule an appointment with Dr. Meinerz or Dr. Burns. Give us a call now at (262) 538-0892 to get started, or stop by our office at N68 W28550, Sussex Rd, Merton, WI