At White Dental we advise our clients that Oral Hygiene is extremely important to not only maintain a healthy mouth and make sure we have fresh breath, but it can also help prevent us from suffering from more serious diseases.
We know that we should brush our teeth at least twice a day, but how many of us floss our teeth regularly?
Flossing also plays a key part in our dental routine, and below are 5 reasons why you should make sure you are adding this to your daily routine.
- SAVE MONEY
By looking after your teeth on a daily basis you are helping to reduce the possibility of needing more specialist and expensive treatment in the future. By flossing as well as brushing your teeth you are less likely to need more serious dental work such as fillings, root canals, and even replacement teeth such as dentures and implants. By regularly cleaning your teeth thoroughly and keeping up your 6 monthly check ups, you are helping to ensure that your teeth will last you a lifetime.
- BRUSHING AND FLOSSING HAS TWICE THE IMPACT
We may feel that brushing our teeth regularly is enough to keep them clean and healthy, however what about in between our teeth? A brush works well to remove the sticky film of bacteria that coats our teeth known as plague, and with the added benefit of a fluoride toothpaste we can help to reduce the amount of harmful bacteria in our mouth and strengthen the enamel. However, although a toothbrush can adequately reach the front and back of our teeth, the bristles struggle to reach in between the teeth. By brushing alone you may only be reaching 60% of the surface area of your teeth, leaving the other 40% exposed to this damaging bacteria. By flossing you are cleaning these hard to reach areas, which will not only remove the plague build up, but will help to keep your breath fresh also.
- PREVENT TARTAR BUILD UP
Tartar is the hard build-up of plaque that forms around your gum line, and once it is there it can only be removed professionally by your dentist. Therefore by regularly flossing, it enables you to remove the tartar-causing plague when it is still soft and pliable. Plague will only harden into tartar when it is left undisturbed for a length of time, so regular brushing and flossing will prevent the plague from building up and being allowed to form into troublesome tartar.
- PROTECT YOUR GUMS, NOT JUST YOUR TEETH
Your gums are a soft and sensitive tissue which covers and protects the bones of your upper and lower jaw. Your jaw is the structure that anchors your teeth in place by their roots, and so the gums are therefore every bit as important as the teeth themselves. Tartar build up can lead to Gingivitis which is the first stage of gum disease and causes red, swollen gums that are susceptible to bleeding. Luckily if caught early this stage is reversible. However if the teeth are left unchecked, the tartar and plaque can spread below the gum line causing advanced gum disease known as Periodontitis where severe inflammation can lead to tooth and bone loss. Again by flossing, you are helping to remove the contributing factors that cause gum disease.
- PREVENT OTHER DISEASES
Gum disease can cause more issues than just discomfort and potential tooth loss. Research has shown that bacteria developing in an unhealthy mouth can have further reaching issues such as heart disease, diabetes, and respiratory problems. Heart disease is a leading killer, and it is possible that gum disease can cause bacteria to enter the bloodstream and attach to fatty deposits in the blood vessels, causing blood clots and potentially lead to heart failure. Therefore flossing regularly is a small step that can have a significant impact on your future health.
Using Dental Floss
Pull out enough floss in order to wrap the ends around your fingertips for better control. Gently slide the floss in between your teeth, however be careful not to slice it down into your gums as this will cause them to bleed. You just need to carefully curve the floss around each tooth and then rub it up and down each side to scrape away plaque and trapped food. Repeat this process for your whole mouth. You may find that your gums bleed slightly the first couple of times, however if this happens consistently then you should contact us and book a check-up.
Book your dental appointment with White Dental today to check your teeth and gums, and learn how to care for your mouth regularly.