We understand that flossing isn’t the easiest part of your dental hygiene routine. In fact, many dentists agree that it is perhaps the most challenging personal grooming activity there is. Unfortunately, it is also arguably the most important aspect of your daily dental care, and forgoing the activity can spell disaster for your dental health. To help you make the most of your hygiene routine, we offer a brief outline on the best way to effectively floss and maintain your good dental health.
How You Should Be Flossing
- Start with about 18 inches of dental floss, and wrap most of it around one of your middle fingers. Wrap the rest around the opposite finger, with enough floss between them to comfortably rub between your teeth.
- Holding the floss securely between your thumbs and forefingers, gently insert it between your teeth using a slow and careful seesaw motion. Some people begin in the middle, while others prefer to begin at one end; as long as you thoroughly floss between every tooth, where you start is up to you.
- Once the floss is between your teeth, curve into a “C” shape against the side of one tooth and rub gently up and down, keeping the floss pressed against the tooth. Be careful not to jerk or snap the floss or you may damage your soft gum tissue.
- Reverse the “C” shape to clean the side of the other tooth, repeating the up and down motion, before gently removing the floss from between your teeth. Repeat for all of your teeth, paying special attention to the back teeth. Most instances of tooth decay and gum disease begin with plaque and tartar buildup on the hard-to-reach molars that are more difficult to clean.