Flossing should be a lifelong companion to brushing. Brushing and flossing serve the same purpose in that they remove plaque and food particles. However, flossing removes them from places your brush cannot reach–the spaces between your teeth.
There are bacteria which live in your mouth. They eat sugars, then produce an acid byproduct that eats away at your tooth enamel. This eventually forms a cavity. Bacteria grow well in the spaces between your teeth and along the gumline. Flossing removes existing bacteria, as well as the food that bacteria eat (which cuts down on bacterial growth).
To floss, use an 18” piece of single-filament dental floss specifically designed for cleaning between teeth. Use a gentle back-and-forth motion to move the floss between your teeth. Floss around each tooth the whole way, including the back molars! The space behind your molars harbors a lot of harmful bacteria.
If you have a difficult time with traditional flossing, don’t worry! There are alternatives that are equally effective. Talk to your dentist about how to use a dental pick, pre-strung flossers, or even a water-flosser!
For more information about flossing, call Family Dentistry of Rockwall in Rockwall, Texas, at 972-772-3900. Dr. Lisa K. Attaway and our team are happy to help you!