You may be a champion brusher, making sure to clean your teeth faithfully every morning and every night. You might even be careful about what you eat and drink, and see your dentist every six months for your regular cleanings and exams. But, are you cleaning between your teeth? Even though you can’t see the areas between your teeth, food debris and plaque can still build up there, working to create cavities and promote gum disease. And you may not be aware that it is happening until it is too late.
The best method for cleaning between your teeth is to use dental floss. It doesn’t matter if you brush or floss first, as long as you do both well. You can use waxed or unwaxed floss, although some people find that waxed floss slides between their teeth and around dental work more easily. You may want to consider using a monofilament floss as opposed to nylon, since monofilament is not as prone to shredding as you use it.
To properly use dental floss, start with about 18 inches, and wrap most of it around your middle fingers. Grasp about one to two inches between your thumbs and forefingers. You will want to start at your back teeth and work your way to the front. Wrap the floss in the shape of a “c” around your tooth, and start by flossing just below, and then away from your gumline. You should use a fresh section of floss for each tooth, and dispose of the floss when you are done. If you wear braces, or a bridge; or if you have trouble holding the floss, you may want to talk with your dentist about using a floss threader or a water flosser.
If you have questions about oral hygiene, or if it is time for your routine dental appointment, our dentist, Dr. Dean Wright will be glad to see you. If you live in the Wichita, Kansas, area and would like to schedule a visit at Cambridge Family Dentistry, you can reach our office by calling 316-687-2110.