Tips on Flossing for Those Out of Practice

May 20, 2013

It’s not the easiest and certainly not the most fun activity of the day, but flossing is a necessity to ensure that your teeth and gums are healthy. In fact, flossing is even more important than brushing for the prevention of gum diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis.Yet, less than half of Americans floss every day. If you’re one of the half who’s gone a little too long without flossing, it’s time to get back in the habit! Be sure to floss twice a day before you brush to free up all the plaque and food between your teeth. Here are some tips for those that need a little help starting again:

  • Remembering: Remembering to floss can be the hardest part. Remind yourself to floss by giving yourself a visual cue, such as a sticker or a message written on your mirror. Even putting floss by your toothbrush works!

  • Don’t Get Discouraged: A lot of people give up after a few days, especially if your gums bleed every time you floss. Don’t let this dissuade you. It takes time for your gums to heal, but within a few days you should notice a significant improvement.

  • Technique: One reason people decide not to floss is that it’s difficult, but flossing can be easy with practice. Wrap some floss around each of your middle fingers and hold it with your index fingers and thumbs, this should give you the control you need reach those difficult-to-floss teeth in the back. Alternatively, most stores sell “floss holders,” which makes flossing a lot more manageable and convenient.

  • Don’t Stop!: Once you’ve managed to get into a daily regimen of flossing and noticed marginal improvement in your teeth and gums, it’s easy to quit while you’re ahead — don’t. Your gums will revert to their old habits. Flossing regularly and habitually is a necessity.

 

Keep at it and your teeth and gums will thank you! Always feel free to contact us if you have any questions about flossing or would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jahangiri.