One of the most common pieces of advice we offer at routine dental appointments is to floss! Most people know that this is something they should be doing daily to improve their oral health, but many aren’t sure exactly how they should be doing it.
In fact, it’s fair to say that there are a fair few common misconceptions about dental floss. We’ve rounded up three of the most common ones below.
1. Is dental floss better than tape or interdental brushes?
No! There are a number of different tools available that all do the same job. Essentially, interdental brushes, floss and tape are all designed for cleaning in between your teeth. Which tool is best for you will depend completely on the shape and size of your teeth, and how much space you have in between each tooth.
2. Are your gums supposed to bleed?
Again, the answer to this is no! If you’re new to flossing, you may find that your gums need a few days to adjust to the new cleaning routine. During this time you may experience a small amount of bleeding. However, if this continues for more than two or three days, see your dentist to check your flossing technique.
3. Does flossing need to be vigorous to be effective?
Once again, no! When you use dental floss, you should be aiming to use the floss to scrape gently at the side of each tooth. This will remove any plaque, bacteria or food residue that’s hiding there. Flossing too vigorously won’t be more effective at doing this, and could damage your gums.
Is dental floss still a bit of a mystery to you? If you could use a helping hand to make sure you are approaching floss in the right way, why not make an appointment with your dentist? They’ll be able to advise you on which type of floss will be best suited to your teeth.