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Many would believe that brushing our teeth twice a day and visiting the dentist every 6 months is a sound routine for good oral health. However did you realise that there are extra things you could and should be doing to enhance your teeth cleaning experience even further? Flossing is one such example of this and something which gets overlooked by lots of people. In this article we take a closer look at flossing and what the benefits of it are.
The first thing to point out and as alluded to above, is that cleaning your teeth alone is simply not enough. The toothbrush can miss vital areas of the mouth, not to mention in-between teeth and hard to reach places. All these areas can experience the same bacteria and plaque build-up as all other areas of the mouth, so attending to these is equally as important, and flossing is one of the best ways that this can be done.
Many people today are looking for the ‘perfect’ smile showing whiter than white teeth. Did you know that flossing is one step you can take to achieving this? Flossing actually helps to remove bacteria and stains which you can’t often see in the mirror (or as mentioned earlier, which the toothbrush can’t reach.) This has an overall net effect of making the teeth look whiter thus promoting a gleaming smile.
When we ask people why they don’t floss we get many responses. Some people have never heard of it, some people think what they already do is adequate and some even find that flossing can be painful.
Flossing can be done in many ways and people often find that the right products make the job much easier. Flossing tape or cleaning between the teeth with inter-dental brushes are among two of the best ways to carry out this job.
Flossing is a practice that can be carried out by all – even those in different groups. E.g. Those who wear braces should still floss and not underestimate its important. Special flossing tape can be purchased which is more ‘sturdy’ for use in the areas with braces. Children should also be educated about the benefits of flossing and get into a routine of doing this as early as possible.
What are the other ways flossing can help in my oral cleaning routine?
In addition to all the points mentioned about, there are also far more specific reasons why we as dentists promote flossing as a practice.
We all get bad breath from time to time and some get it worse than others. Flossing can actually help with this problem so if this applies to you, why not give it a try and see whether it makes a difference? Flossing can also improve gum health. It is understandable that people with gum problems may avoid flossing because they think it will make bleeding of the gums more likely, but as long as this is done sensibly and correctly, it can have a much bigger and overall positive effect long term.
As you may have gathered by now, flossing is another little step (but one which makes a huge difference) in anyones teeth cleaning routine. If you don’t floss already then try now and discover all these benefits for yourself.
To find out more on what your experience as one of our patients might be like, visit the patient journey page now.