5 Risky Flossing Mistakes to Avoid

5 Risky Flossing Mistakes to Avoid

When it comes to preventing cavities, brushing and flossing (and routine dental care) are your best defenses. Unfortunately, flossing is an often-skipped step for many people. Dr. Kenneth Higgins and our experienced team here at IDTC Dental Center in Grand Prairie, Texas, are on a mission to make sure our patients are flossing the right way. 

Below, Dr. Higgins highlights five risky flossing mistakes that you should avoid.

1. Skipping your flossing session

The worst flossing mistake is to bypass flossing altogether. Flossing helps remove plaque and bacteria from in between your teeth, a place where interproximal cavities can form. Brushing alone can’t remove plaque from these hard-to-reach areas, and skipping flossing leaves you vulnerable to this kind of decay.

If you have trouble remembering to floss, try adding a reminder on your phone. You can also add a sticky note to your bathroom mirror.

2. Not using quality floss

Have you ever wondered which floss is right for you? No doubt you’ve explored the oral care aisle in your local stores and discovered dozens of options. Low-quality floss isn’t up for the job, and in fact, poor-quality floss is more likely to leave behind shreds of floss in between your teeth.

It doesn’t matter if you like flavored or unflavored floss, but it does matter if your floss has the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval. Always choose floss (and toothpaste, for that matter) with this seal.

3. Skipping flossing aids

Some people need a little extra help when flossing, and there are flossing aids to help. You may find that it’s hard to floss around a bridge. Or maybe arthritis in your hands makes it hard to use regular floss. Flossing aids, including pre-threaded flossers, water flossers, and interproximal brushes, are designed to help individuals with special flossing needs.

Not sure if you need a flossing aid? Dr. Higgins can talk you through your options and help you determine the best flossing aids for your needs.

4. You floss too much

Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. Flossing too much can irritate your gums, especially if you're pressing hard against your gums. While you should brush twice daily, you only need to floss once each day

Tip: Consider flossing during your nighttime brushing routine. Brushing and flossing before bed help ensure that as much bacteria and plaque is removed from your teeth before you go to bed. 

5. You’re snapping the floss on your gums 

Snapping the floss against your gums is a common mistake, especially for individuals who have tightly crowded teeth. However, this action can damage your gums and make them bleed.

Refresh your flossing techniques

If you’re guilty of these mistakes, don’t worry. It’s never too late to take your flossing game to the next level. Keep these tips in mind the next time you floss:

If you’d like further guidance, don’t hesitate to ask us any questions about flossing techniques (or flossing aids) during your next cleaning in our Grand Prairie, Texas office. For appointments or questions, you can reach IDTC Dental Center LLC  at 972-362-2375. Alternatively, book your appointment with our online scheduling tool.

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