We've all been told it's important to floss our teeth but did you know there are 5 different ways to make flossing your teeth - dare we say - FUN!
It's true! In fact, there are 5 different ways to floss! And that's GREAT NEWS! Why? Because most patients that don't floss regularly say the #1 excuse for not flossing regularly is that "they don't enjoy doing it" even though they know that it really helps keep their mouth healthy.
Why flossing is important...
I'm sure you already know that flossing keeps your teeth clean. But did you know that flossing protects your gums as well? As you eat, food ends up lodged between your teeth and gums. Left there, it becomes plaque - that gooey white residue that looks horrible and makes your teeth feel fuzzy (I hate that feeling). Fortunately, you can remove plaque easily with floss. The bad thing though, is if you don't use floss to remove it, that plaque can harden and become tartar. As you might suspect, tartar is even worse than plaque because only your dental hygienist or dentist can remove it with a metal pick or scraper. (As a result, gum disease can infect your jaw if you don't get the tartar removed!)
So now you know why you need to floss! But what can you do to make it more enjoyable? Why not try one of these 5 methods of flossing? Because I'm betting you'll find at least one of them is actually...dare I say it...FUN! And even if you don't find it fun, flossing occasionally is still better than never flossing at all.
Your 5 different ways to make flossing your teeth - dare we say - FUN!
- Good "old fashioned" dental floss: When I was a kid (yes, we're talking DECADES ago...), Mom gave us chunks of woven dental floss to wrap around our fingers and floss between all our teeth. Still effective, woven floss does a great job of removing plaque. Need the floss to slide easier? Try waxed floss. But if you want the ULTIMATE in floss, try some of the new FLAVORED flosses! You may have tried cinnamon or mint already but did you know you can get cupcake or bacon-flavored floss?!?
- Floss Picks: Think of a floss pick as a plastic floss holder that replaces your fingers. The floss pick has floss at one end and a toothpick at the other. With a floss pick you don't have to put your fingers in your mouth since the floss handle stays outside your mouth. Floss picks are economical and often come in packs of 20 or more. Best of all, they're small and discreet making them ideal for use at home, work, school, or between meals!
- Interdental brushes: Not at all like a typical toothbrush, interdental brushes are much smaller and often look like a toothpick with bristles. Available in a wide range of sizes, interdental brushes are your best choice for effectiveness and versatility especially for anyone wearing braces. Like floss picks, disposable interdental brushes are great to keep with you and use throughout the day!
- Water flossers: Have you heard of WaterPik? Although a brand name, "water pick" is how most people refer to a "water flosser". Water flossers come corded or un-corded and utilize a small stream of water to clean between your teeth. You'll feel just like you had your mouth jet-rinsed by the hygienist after a cleaning! Best of all, many find it easier and more comfortable than traditional flossing. Although some may question its overall effectiveness, water flossing can be great for gentle gum care and for reaching below the gum line. They’ll be more expensive than the other tools we’ve covered here, but they’re a worthwhile investment to get yourself into the habit of flossing.
- Air Floss: A more recent invention, air flossing uses a stream of air and tiny water droplets to remove plaque. These tools are very similar to water flossers, although they’re typically more expensive. Still, they can be a great investment for anyone who loves cool tech gadgets.
The choice is yours!
Ultimately, how you choose to floss is up to you. There's no question that flossing improves your oral health. So choose your favorite and give flossing a whirl! Let us know which of the 5 different ways to make flossing your teeth - dare we say - FUN! you choose!
Want to learn more about why oral hygiene is necessary? Download our guide on gum disease here.