Just brushing your teeth isn’t enough to keep your mouth clean and prevent disease. The tissue between your teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach is more prone to infection. That is why flossing regularly is just as essential to your overall oral health care as brushing. The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests flossing at least once a day to promote total oral health.
Why should you floss?
Flossing removes plaque from the areas of your teeth that your toothbrush just can’t reach. If you don’t remove this plaque, it can harden into calculus or tartar which can cause infection or disease. Two common issues associated with not flossing include gingivitis (gum infection) and periodontitis (gum disease), both of which can lead to the loss of a once-healthy tooth.
When should you floss?
In the end, it does not matter if you floss during the day or the night, as long as you floss regularly. The best way to make sure that you’re flossing on a regular basis is to make it a part of your daily routine. If you feel too tired at night, try flossing in the mornings. If your mornings feel too rushed, make flossing a regular part of your nightly ritual.
Here are some helpful flossing tips from the ADA:
- Flossing is necessary for children who have at least two teeth that touch. If your child is not yet able to floss effectively by themselves, help them floss and make it a regular part of their teeth-brushing routine.
- Try different flossing methods and find one that works best for you. Those who have difficulty flossing may like using a dental pick, pre-threaded flosser, or even just a different type of floss.
- If you experience pain when you first start flossing, this pain should ease within a week or two of regular flossing and brushing. If you still experience discomfort after you have been flossing regularly, consult your dentist.
No matter when you floss or what type of floss you use, make sure that you floss on a regular basis. If you find it difficult or you are not sure if you’re flossing effectively, consult a member of our team. Though flossing may add just one more step to your daily routine, it’s just as important to achieving a healthy smile as brushing.