Dental Tips Blog

Sep
13

Could Flossing Be Bad for Your Gums?

Posted in Gum Disease

Flossing is important. Daily flossing helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease, but did you know that improper flossing could be harmful to your gums?

Technique Matters!

When you floss, stay as close to your tooth as possible. Wrap the floss snugly around the crown in a C-shape before working it below the gums between teeth.

Scoot the floss up and down all the while keeping it pulled firmly against the tooth. You don’t need to pull so hard that your tooth hurts, but keep the floss thread taut enough that it stays on the tooth.

Don’t just randomly shove floss between two teeth. Pay attention to each side of every tooth. Also, avoid forcing the floss through tight spots; instead, see-saw it in gently.

Why It Matters

Your teeth are curved on the sides. Picture a row of eggs resting in a foam egg crate. The spaces between the eggs are kind of hourglass shaped. Neighboring teeth sitting in gums look similarly.

If you don’t hug the floss to the crown of the tooth, you’ll end up missing all the plaque packed in at the gum line. It’s key to follow the curve of the tooth as you scoot the floss down to ensure you reach all the plaque.

Not only will incorrect technique miss plaque, but it can hurt your gums. Simply jamming the floss straight down between your teeth can cut your soft tissue.

Signs of Incorrect Flossing

Do your gums bleed every time you floss despite the fact that you floss daily? Is there a cleft or slice mark on the gums between your teeth?

Rough flossing may be your problem.

Ask your dentist for tips on gentle flossing and alternatives to traditional floss.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064
770.422.8776

May
6

Are You Using the Wrong Floss?

Yes, your dentist is glad you’re using ANY kind of floss, at all!

But did you know that flossing could be such a chore for you because you’re flossing incorrectly? You may even be using the wrong type of floss, altogether.

Getting your flossing right could get you excited about keeping your teeth in tip-top shape.

Embrasure Space

No, this isn’t hugging etiquette!

The embrasure space is the dental term for the gap between teeth: how big it is, the shape of it, and how much of it is filled with gum tissue.

That space is affected by things like:

  • Tooth alignment
  • Tooth size and shape
  • Gum recession
  • Missing teeth.

Flossing is all about cleaning between teeth – the front and back-facing sides that don’t get reached with a toothbrush. But the type of floss you choose has to suit that embrasure area in order to do a good job.

Floss Options and Alternatives

Choose floss by keeping in mind those gaps between your teeth. For teeth tightly packed together, you’ll want something thin and smooth, like a waxed ribbon floss or tape. Large gaps like tufted or “fluffy” floss for wicking away plaque.

Only have a couple lonely teeth left? Show them some love by flossing with a piece of soft yarn or gauze that reaches all sides.

If you have braces or just find it difficult to floss with your hands, a water flosser could be right for you.

Some flosses come mounted on a horseshoe shaped toothbrush head for easy reaching.

Along with regular dental checkups and cleanings, flossing is an essential part of a healthy mouth and body. Find out how you can improve in your flossing technique by scheduling a visit with your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Gainesville Dental Group
1026 Thompson Bridge Rd
Gainesville, GA 30501
(770) 297-0401

Jan
30

Is Flossing an Outdated Oral Hygiene Practice?

Recently, the dental community was shaken up by some groundbreaking news.

A review found that there are no formal, scientific studies to date conclusively showing that individual flossing prevents oral disease.

Does this overturn everything your dentist has told you so far? No. Here’s the main reason: it’s extremely difficult to measure flossing.

The Challenge of Critiquing Floss Effectiveness

Flossing studies are limited by:

  • The number of participants
  • Dishonest participants
  • How long the study is carried out
  • Individual flossing technique

What Makes Flossing Effective

Flossing can be completely pointless if it’s not done correctly. If you ask your hygienist to show you at your next dental cleaning and checkup, you’ll learn that the action is a bit more involved than an up-down motion. Flossing also takes daily commitment to experience the benefits.

Why Should You Bother?

One thing everyone agrees on is the fact that dental plaque is responsible for cavities and gum disease. Get rid of the plaque on a daily basis and you reduce your risk for these problems.

Tooth brushing usually isn’t enough to access spots between teeth that hide bacteria. Whether you use floss, an interdental brush, a water flosser, or anything else, plaque removal is the ultimate goal.

Supplement Your Flossing Efforts

What people need to understand is that it’s not flossing in itself that’s so important.

You need to reinforce your teeth with fluoride and have them professionally cleaned twice a year or more. Special ingredients in mouthwashes and toothpaste help prevent plaque development in the first place.

The bottom line is this: flossing by itself is not the solution but it is an integral part of your preventive dental care. Ask your dentist for a professional opinion.

Posted on behalf of:
Southern Charm Dental
7119 FM 1464 #312
Richmond, TX 77407
(832) 648-3685

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