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When It’s Okay To Be Strung Out: Why Flossing Your Teeth Is Important

When It’s Okay To Be Strung Out: Why Flossing Your Teeth Is Important Huntington Beach

“Have you been flossing?” There’s no doubt; the dentist asks you this infamous question. And although we’ve all heard it a million times, many people still do not realize the important role flossing plays in our oral health. People brush their teeth more frequently, but when it comes to pulling out the floss, they’re at a loss.

Although regularly brushing your teeth throughout your day is a good habit, a toothbrush is not a substitute for dental floss. When you brush your teeth, you’re only cleaning the surfaces of your teeth, leaving the sides of your teeth and the gum line dirty. A toothbrush is a powerful cleaning tool, but it’s just too big to fit into those nooks and crannies. Without floss, the areas between your teeth and under your gums become a breeding ground for bacteria. If left to stay, it hardens into tartar and also contributes to bad breath. When plaque and tartar build up under your gums, it can result in gingivitis or periodontal disease. Many times, you won’t notice your gums are in danger until the disease has advanced and it can be difficult to restore your oral health once reaching this stage. According to the Mayo Clinic, Periodontal disease has dire complications such as gum loss which causes tooth loss, and worse, coronary artery disease, stroke, asthma, respiratory problems, and rheumatoid arthritis, to name a few.

Don’t wait until it’s too late! Incorporating flossing into your daily routine can save you from serious pain down the road. We recommend flossing once a day, and doing so before you brush can make brushing more effective. With less plaque between your teeth, the fluoride in your toothpaste can get to more parts of your mouth! At Olive Dental Group, we suggest this simple flossing rule: “Floss only the teeth you want to keep!”

Tips For Flossing

• Use approximately 18 inches of floss. Too much floss will only get in the way, and too little will make the job more difficult than it should be. Floss choices include flat tape or string, waxed or unwaxed, flavored or plain. PTFE (polytetrafluorethylene floss) slides easily and is less likely to shred particularly for tight spaces. Dental tape is broader and flatter and works great with extra space. Oral B & Glide both make excellent floss.
• Use a gentle but firm rubbing motion to guide the floss between teeth. Aggressive movements will only result in irritated and red gums.
• Don’t forget about your back teeth! This can be a tricky spot to reach and is where gum disease is most common.
• Try using a floss pick or a Y-shaped disposable flosser. Many people find them easier to use than dental floss, and they come in fun shapes and colors for kids!
• If you have a dental bridge, make sure you use a floss threader
• To easily fit it into your schedule, try flossing in the shower before you turn the water on. You’re welcome!

Keep in mind, flossing teeth shouldn’t be painful! Although it might be uncomfortable when you first introduce it into your routine, that discomfort should soon ease up. If you are out of practice, your gums may bleed. But that will subside. Both your gums and teeth will thank you for keeping them clean and healthy, and your radiant smile will be proof!

Ready to schedule your appointment with Olive Dental Group? Contact our Huntington Beach office by using the form below!

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We genuinely hope our website is helpful to you in learning more about our practice, dental conditions and treatments, dental recommendations, and more. Please browse through our website and be sure to give us a call if you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you and your family achieve your most authentic and beautifully healthy smiles.

Sincerely, Our Dental Team.

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