March 7, 2021
If you’re like most people, you may find that brushing is easy enough to accomplish; however, flossing is too time-consuming and not “worth it.” This unfortunate mindset is why many individuals are suffering from gum disease. By avoiding this critical task, you can be putting your oral and overall health at risk. A dentist in Richardson explains why taking a few additional minutes to floss your teeth each day can make a dramatic difference in the health and longevity of your smile.
Why Flossing is Important
When your dentist asks you if you floss, it’s best to be honest, as they already know the answer just by looking at your smile. Forgoing the use of dental floss to remove bad bacteria between your teeth can spell disaster for your teeth, gums, and overall health. Here are just a few reasons you should start adding it to your daily oral hygiene routine:
- Plaque forms quickly, and it can lead to tooth decay and gum disease if left untreated. After you’ve finished a meal, you can expect plaque to harden within a few short hours. In choosing to skip a few days of flossing, you’ll be left with a substance that can only be removed by a dental professional.
- You’ll reduce your risk for diabetes, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other serious health conditions.
- You’ll avoid having a cavity form between your teeth, which can be painful when it’s time to receive a filling.
- If you are pregnant, flossing can not only improve your oral health, but it can also reduce the risk of preterm birth and low birth weight.
How to Floss Your Teeth Correctly
Now that you know why flossing is important, you may be wondering if there is a right and wrong way to do it. Actually, there is. Taking the incorrect approach can cause you to harm your soft tissues that may result in gum recession. To avoid damaging your gums, try the following steps to make sure you’re flossing the right way:
- Pull about 18” of floss and wind the ends around your middle fingers.
- Holding it tightly, take the floss between your hands and gentle glide in between your teeth until you reach the gum line.
- Curving the floss into the shape of a “C,” you will move it against the sides of your teeth and away from your gums. It is important that you repeat this process for all your teeth, including those located at the back of your mouth.
By keeping the benefits of flossing in mind, you will likely find yourself flossing without even realizing it. When combined with brushing and rinsing, you will have a powerful trifecta that ensures a healthier smile.
About the Practice
At McDougal and Richards Dentistry, our team of expert dentists and staff want to help every patient who walks through our doors achieve happier, healthier smiles. With a clear focus on preventive care, we can ensure your teeth and gums remain decay- and damage-free throughout the year, providing you with the aesthetics and confidence you deserve. Whether it is adding a fluoride treatment to your visit, conducting an oral cancer screening, or simply providing you with tips on how and why you should floss each day, we’re here to help. If you want to make changes to your smile in 2021, contact us at (972) 231-5376.
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