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Recent surveys made by dental health organizations have determined that only forty percent of Americans floss as regularly as they should, at least once per day, especially at night time. A shocking twenty percent of Americans never floss at all! We at your favorite Dallas-Fort Worth area dental clinic feel that it is important to impart how crucial a proper flossing regimen is for your teeth and gums.
The Breakdown—Here’s What Happens In Between Your Teeth
There are some nasty bacteria that can live and grow in our mouths, we all know that. No matter how religiously you brush, however, you cannot avoid a simple fact: Your toothbrush, no matter how fancy, cannot reach the areas in between your teeth. Some people reason that there can’t be nearly as much bacteria and gunk in between their teeth, and they may be right about sheer numbers, but why is it not just as important to clear out what’s in between your teeth? Your toothbrush will mainly only be able to clean the widest point of the surface of your teeth. When you do not floss, food particles and other unpleasant things begin to gather in between your teeth. Have you ever flossed after not doing so for a while? The smell is usually quite bad—this is because the bacteria that accumulate often cause bad breath, too.
Even worse, these bacteria that get all in between your teeth cause some pretty serious illnesses, as well. The dreaded gingivitis is very common among Americans that do not floss, as well as periodontitis. This can make your gums painfully inflamed and infected. Not flossing also commonly results in cavities, which can be so painful, as we all know, but also lead to tooth loss. Lots of good reasons to floss, right?
What You Can Do—Floss is Boss!
Thankfully, regularly flossing your teeth can knock out most of these problems before they even start. What is crucial here is adding it to your regular dental care regimen—it only makes sense to get your teeth as clean as possible, right? Floss comes in so many types, now, but most of us recognize the standard issue string floss. Waxed or unwaxed, flavored or not, the typical idea is to snag off about two feet of floss and wind them around your fingers. You then place it between your teeth and crack open the bacteria’s defenses before they settle in and cause problems.
If dental floss string is not your thing, do not fret, there are lots of options nowadays for making your dental health journey as pleasant and easy as possible. There are single use flossers, for instance, with a small strand of floss spread taut on what looks a bit like a toothpick, and you simply floss in the same manner but without the same mess. A lot of people find this an easier method and a more welcome part of their routine. One downside is the waste—not everywhere can recycle that type of plastic, and using one a day accumulates to a lot of trash, over time.
Another very popular type of floss is a high powered stream of water. WaterPik is a popular brand, but there are many others for you to choose from. A lot of Americans prefer this method over string because it feels easier on their gums, giving them less irritation. Another method still is air flossing. Sonicare, one of the best brands of dental hygiene tools, in our humble opinion, makes a fantastic air flosser with a replaceable head that uses, you guessed it, a stream of air to disrupt bacterial growth and dislodge food and plaque from between your teeth.
Take our advice—as your friendly favorite dental clinic, we urge you to reconsider your flossing practice if you have been a little lax. With as much as we love for you to come and visit, we do hate to have to tell people that their lax flossing has led to some unfortunate consequences. Regular flossing and brushing will not only keep your Ft. Worth dentist smiling, but will help maintain your healthy smile for years to come. Ask one of our award-winning hygienists for help in choosing the best products for you and let us continue to help customize your care routine to your needs and convenience. Give us a call for an appointment soon to learn even more about proper flossing techniques and how they can help save your smile and your money.