Flossing is one of the best tools to prevent cavities, gum disease, and teeth loss. It is sad to observe that people do not use it with regularity. And many people are unaware of the different types of dental floss they can use.
Flossing Prevents Plaque Buildup by Getting to Hard-to-reach Areas
When we brush our teeth, small portions of food are sometimes left in between our teeth. In our view, the spaces between our teeth are tiny, and we often overlook them. However, bacteria never ignore them! If we were a tiny germ-feeding on food debris, these spaces would look like New York City! Dentists and oral hygienists know that which is why they stress the importance of keeping these critical areas as clean as possible by using different flossing techniques. Because if we don`t, these tiny bacteria will start forming cities between our teeth ! They will feed on the debris we leave untended, and then they will excrete acidic products that will attach to our enamel and form a film of plaque over the teeth’ surface. This plaque film helps more bacteria settle there, leading to exponential colonization – or even faster bacteria growth.
Many dental researchers agree that the most damaging cavities are formed on spots with a thick layer of plaque. When it is formed between our teeth, it usually stays unnoticed and becomes a significant factor in dental troubles.
Brushing is not Enough
It is important to brush our teeth with regularity and in a diligent way to prevent the accumulation of plaque on the outside surfaces of the teeth. However, brushing cannot properly reach the spaces in-between our teeth, especially if our teeth are very narrowly spaced. Even teeth touching one another still have a tiny space in-between them, where bacteria will gladly inhabit and will remain undisturbed by your toothbrush.
This is why flossing is such a lifesaver! By flossing, we can get in these tiny spaces and do a proper cleaning and housekeeping of our mouth – making sure the tiny germ-guests making their houses there are shown the door out!
Which Flossing Methods to Use?
Flossing string is the universal method to clean interdental spaces.
Advantages: Using round string-like floss can help you a lot if the spaces in-between your teeth are extra tiny, and tape or interdental brush can’t get in there
Disadvantages: Sometimes, it’s thin in diameter. It’s like a thread or string, meaning it’s difficult to handle. It’s likely to cut your gums while using it, causing bleeding or infection. It covers only a tiny area at a time, and it’s easy to miss spots.
Dental tape or interdental brush: it overcomes the disadvantages of dental string flossing.
Advantages: Dental tape is like a ribbon – it is wider and flat. They are thicker than the regular string floss and cover a greater surface between the teeth.
Disadvantages: If the spaces between your teeth are tiny, it is harder to stick in an interdental brush or tape. In this case, you can use regular string-like floss.
Proper oral health guarantees fewer dentist trips, a healthier bank account, and a shining smile for a longer time. So take those 5 minutes out of your day to floss properly the food residues that the brushing has not removed. When you make this habit linked to brushing, you will not feel the pain of the task. You will look forward to the feeling of your teeth squeaking clean! Happy flossing!