Your dentist or hygienist always asks, and you always fudge your answer a little bit: how often do you floss your teeth? In addition to regular brushing, flossing should be part of your daily oral hygiene routine. It’s a quick, easy way to keep your smile healthy and looking great, and has other benefits as well.
If you already brush twice a day, you may think that’s enough. Unfortunately, the bristles aren’t able to reach every part of the tooth and gums. If plaque is allowed to build up in those crevices, you could be facing tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. But the health issues don’t stop there.
Plaque is a thin layer of bacteria found on the teeth. If not addressed, it can harden and turn to tartar. That’s why flossing is so important. With the ability to reach all the areas your brush can’t, floss removes plaque, keeping it from building up along the gum line.
Poor dental health care can affect the rest of the body as well. Links have been drawn between poor dental health and diabetes, heart disease, premature births, and a host of other issues. The bacteria growing in the mouth may affect other functions of the body, such as the ability to control blood sugar.
There are many different ways to floss, including floss picks, interdental brushes, water jets, and more. But you really only need a piece of floss and a couple of index fingers. Holding the floss with your fingers, guide the floss between teeth and down to the gum line. Your dental hygienist at Creekside Dental will be happy to help you with your brushing and flossing technique.
If it’s been a while, you might see some bleeding around the gums. But if you do it daily, the bleeding should subside. However, if discomfort continues, you may want to talk to a dentist or other dental professional to see if other factors are in play.
Creekside Dental has been serving the greater Vancouver area for more than 25 years. If you have more questions about flossing or are experiencing pain in and around your mouth, feel free to schedule an appointment with us. We serve families in the Battle Ground, Ridgefield, La Center and Woodland areas as well.