Let’s face it, flossing can be a pain, but probably not if you are doing it right. Then there’s the news about whether or not flossing is even needed to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Well, both the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the American Dental Association recommend flossing your teeth once a day to remove the plaque that cannot be reached with your toothbrush but that can, and will, harden into tartar and lead to cavities and periodontal disease.
Now that we’ve established that flossing is good for you, let’s talk about the right way to floss. Here are five steps you can follow:
Step 1: You will need about 18 inches of floss to do this right. Wrap the left end of the floss around your left middle finger, and the right end of the floss around your right middle finger, leaving some in-between, of course, to floss your teeth with.
Step 2: Pull the floss tightly between your forefingers and thumbs.
Step 3: Gently guide the floss between your teeth and rub it up and down on the sides of each tooth.
Step 4: As you gently rub the floss up and down, when you reach the gum, curve the floss into a C shape against one tooth. Gently slide it into the space between the gum and the tooth to remove any plaque developing under the gumline.
Step 5: Unravel the floss from your fingers as needed so you are regularly using clean floss. Repeat this method on the rest of your teeth making sure not to forget the back side of each of your last teeth.