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How to Floss

How to Floss

Here are some tips on how to floss effectively:

  1. Wrap the ends of an 18-inch to 24-inch section of floss around your middle fingers. Many people like to floss after brushing. This will allow the toothbrush to start removing the stray particles of food from your teeth before you even begin to floss. However, brushing your teeth after flossing may allow more fluoride from the toothpaste to reach between teeth.
  2. Hold the floss between your thumbs and forefingers of both hands. You should leave about 3-4 inches (7.5-9 cm) of the floss exposed. This is the area you'll be using to floss your teeth. Once you wrap the floss around your index fingers, you can grab it with your index fingers and thumbs. Your thumbs can be more helpful in flossing upper teeth and index fingers can be more helpful in flossing bottom teeth.
  3. Gently slide the floss between your teeth, starting wherever you like. Slide the floss gently between tooth and gum line. Do this carefully to prevent bleeding or hurting your gums. Move the floss gently in a "C" motion when it makes contact with the gums and use a gentle up and down motion to clean the area. After sliding the floss between your teeth, curve it around the bone and let it dip below the gum line (ideally, it should dip about 2-3 millimetres down). Once the floss is in place, move it up and down to agitate the area carefully. This will help reach the contours of each tooth. Additionally, floss in a back and forth motion to help scrape additional plaque and debris. When you're done, gently move the floss back out the way it came.
  4. Repeat the process between each tooth. Make sure to floss your teeth one at a time. Clean floss can be acquired by unraveling the extra floss that is wrapped around the index finger. Make sure to use a new piece of floss for each tooth. If you're really getting in there and run out of clean floss, pull out some new floss to finish the process. You may experience some bleeding in your gums. This is a sign that your gums actually need to be flossed more often. Once a regular habit is established, bleeding will cease.
  5. Don't forget the backs of your rear molars. Gum disease and tooth decay frequently occur on the back teeth. It is crucial to also make the effort by gently sliding the floss between your rear molars and gums, carefully pulling both sides of floss toward you as you agitate the area.
  6. Unwind new floss from one hand to the other as you go, so that you are flossing with a fresh piece of floss.
  7. Rinse your mouth out with mouthwash or water when you're done flossing. After you floss, rinsing out your mouth can help remove any stray particles that were nearly dislodged from your gums, or which you were able to remove but which were left in your mouth. This will also help give your mouth a fresh, clean feeling.
  8. Floss your teeth at least once every day. Flossing for 2 to 3 minutes, but even 60 seconds of flossing daily can significantly improve your gum health. Most people floss before bed. You don't want to overdo the flossing either, or you may damage your gums. Just once a day should be the perfect amount.

For more information on flossing or other daily oral-hygiene practices, please do not hesitate to contact DentalCareXtra. Alternatively, complete the form below, and one of our friendly team members will contact you.

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