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Flossing can eliminate bacteria that are not easily accessible by a toothbrush, particularly in between teeth. Flossing involves the use of a fine piece of cord that can be purchased at just about any type of general store and is specifically designed for flossing. You use both hands and place a small length of it between your teeth and move it up and down gently until all debris has been cleared.

Importance of flossing

There is a belief that flossing is an important deterrent against plaque build up. Twice daily flossing, along with brushing, can help to prevent the development of cavities and periodontal disease later on in life. It removes debris and plaque that stick readily to teeth and beneath the gum line. Your Burlington, Ontario dentist will tell you how important flossing is to the ongoing upkeep and health of your teeth.

Flossing should take about 3 minutes to complete and it should take place every day and should be undertaken before brushing. There are two ways to floss, one is the spool method and the second is the loop method.

Spool method

For flossing of both types you will need an 18 inch length of floss. Using the spool method, most of the floss is wound onto the middle finger while the remainder is wrapped around the same finger on the other hand. It will be this finger that will take up the used floss. When you place the floss between your teeth, you should wind it around the particular tooth in the shape of a C. Then move the floss upwards and downwards gently, ensuring it penetrates under the gum line, which is where your toothbrush has difficulty reaching, but is subject to the accumulation of bacteria.

Loop method

The loop method is preferred by those who find finger movement difficult. You tie the ends of the piece of floss to form a loop. You place all your fingers in the loop but not the thumbs. Your thumbs and index fingers can be used to guide the floss.

Floss gently

With the two methods, flossing gently is important as it ensures your gums don’t get cut in the flossing process. When your teeth and gums are first cleaned with floss they may feel a little sensitive or even bleed slightly for the first 3 to 4 days.