How to Effectively Floss Your Teeth

You know the lecture. You hear it every time you get your teeth checked. Sometimes it comes in the form of a question like, “How often do you floss?” The truth is, flossing is essential for good oral hygiene. But just as important is that you do it correctly. It plays a crucial role in excellent oral health.

Here are a few tips we included to ensure that when you floss, you do it right:

Choose a Good Floss

We recommend a waxed floss because it slides easily between your teeth and doesn’t fray as much as the unwaxed type. A wide floss is more effective in removing particles from between your teeth. If you like the flavored variety, that’s fine if it helps you floss more. Once you’ve chosen the right floss, now you must use it correctly.

Flossing Technique

Take a strand of your floss, about 18 inches, wrapping around a finger while grabbing the other side between your index finger and thumb. Guide the floss between the teeth, sliding it up and down. Make sure you floss around the gum line, contouring your floss into a c-shape and gently removing particles there as well. When you move to another area, use a clean section of the floss by moving the strand up your finger. We recommend starting on one side in the back and work around to the other side. Do this for both upper and lower teeth.

Flossing Back Teeth

You might find the back teeth difficult to reach. If that’s the case, simply use a longer strand of floss. Many patients prefer flossing with a water-flosser to effectively clean the gum areas and between the teeth, especially in the back.  Also, floss picks have handles that allow you to reach all the way in the back.

How Often Should You Floss?

It’s highly recommended that you floss at least once daily. Ideally, we would like to see you do it after every meal. But if you can’t, we recommend you do it before bedtime to ensure you sleep with clean teeth.

To ensure good dental health, you must brush your teeth often and floss every day. But equally important is that you schedule a teeth cleaning and oral checkups regularly. This practice will ensure you can be proud of your teeth for a lifetime.

Next Step

The Austin practice of Hill Country Oral Surgeons is available to patients who are concerned about their oral hygiene and dental health. To learn more about how you can ensure your teeth and gums are always healthy, contact us or call 512-327-7233.