When was the last time you flossed your teeth? If you answered, “today,” than great! If you avoid flossing, any dentist will encourage you to do better, but know that you’re not alone. In fact, roughly 73% of Americans would rather go grocery shopping than floss. To motivate you, ask yourself why flossing is so important. If you can’t think of any answers, we can help.
How Often Do You Floss?
There’s only one correct answer to this question. It’s important to floss every single day, even though barely over a quarter of the population follows this guideline. Your toothbrush may remove particles which are stuck on the surfaces of your teeth, but the spaces between cannot be reached by the bristles properly. Thread-like floss slides between your teeth to help remove particles and bacteria stuck in the cracks and crevices your brush can’t remove. It’s necessary to clean out these areas every day to avoid plaque and tartar buildup.
Do You Avoid Flossing?
If you do, why? Flossing serves so many important purposes from regulating blood circulation in your gums to keeping teeth free of bacteria. If flossing is uncomfortable, it’s most likely either because your gums need to get used to the feeling, you are not doing it properly, or you have an underlying dental issue which requires attention. There are many different types of dental floss available to help fit your needs for comfort and ease of use. If you don’t make time to floss, bacteria will build up between your teeth.
Proper flossing techniques should require the average person to use 122 yards of floss per year. However, the average is more like 18 yards of floss sold per person each year in the United States. This means that many people may floss, but they don’t do it correctly, effectively, or often enough. You should use about 18 inches of floss during each flossing session, and gently slide the strand around both sides of each tooth and into your gumline without cutting the tissue. If you don’t know how to floss properly, ask Dr. Young and our dental team to show you how at your next checkup.
Visit your Lafayette Dentist
Avoiding flossing can lead to cavities, periodontal disease, and other severe dental conditions. To evaluate your oral health and your hygiene behaviors, schedule an appointment with Dr. Young at our dentist office in Lafayette, LA, at (337) 237-6453.