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How to Properly Brush and Floss

Home care is equally important to visiting the dentist twice a year. Brushing and flossing are the most important daily habits to good oral hygiene. Proper brushing and flossing not only protect the teeth and gums from disease but also reduce the bacteria that may lead to other diseases in the body.

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The Benefits of Brushing

The purpose of brushing is to remove food particles from your teeth. When food decomposes in your mouth, it nourishes dangerous bacteria. These bacteria cause several unpleasant problems that lead to painful tooth decay and other serious conditions.

Proper brushing and flossing are essential for prevention of:

The Right Way to Brush

You should plan to brush at least twice a day or after each meal. The proper toothbrush should be small with soft, rounded bristles and should ideally be changed every 3-4 months. There are also various types of electrical toothbrushes that have received The American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval. You may also consider using a specialty tongue brush that's designed to clean the surface of the tongue better than a regular toothbrush.

If you choose an electric toothbrush, focus on the area where the gums meet the teeth. Also, don’t forget to brush your tongue — a large percentage of bacteria live there.

Steps for Proper Brushing

Why Flossing Matters

Although your teeth may feel fresh just after you brush, food particles and bacteria remain in the small spaces between the teeth. Flossing is an additional way to prevent decay and recession by removing plaque from the spaces between the teeth. These areas are difficult to reach with traditional toothbrushes and flossing should be done everyday. There are many types of floss on the market and selecting the right type of floss is important and should be discussed with the dentist.

Basic Steps for Proper Flossing

When flossing, make sure you clean the spaces between the teeth in the front and rear of your mouth. You may bleed a little at first. As you make flossing a regular habit, however, the bleeding should stop. If you continue to bleed following regular brushing and flossing, make an appointment with your Legacy Dental Group dentist.

To begin flossing, you should:

Pre-threaded Floss

Many people have switched from traditional floss to the new pre-threaded floss holders. These convenient ways to floss make it much easier to quickly and effectively floss between each of your teeth. If you find it difficult to wrap floss around your fingers and reach your back teeth this may be a great alternative. Should the floss become dirty, simply rinse the floss and continue — or dispose of it and use a new flosser. You can use the pick-end to carefully dislodge stubborn food particles.

Schedule an Appointment Today

When you schedule an appointment at Legacy Dental Group, your dentist and hygienist will be able to help you with proper brushing and flossing techniques. We will also professionally clean your teeth, take x-rays, and recommend any necessary procedures. Remember, preventive care is an important part of maintaining excellent dental health. Schedule an appointment with Legacy Dental Group today.

Questions / concerns?

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding your oral health, we are more than happy to sit down with you and discuss how you can achieve a beautiful, healthy smile.