Flossing is an essential part of any oral health routine. Yet, only 32% of adults follow dentists’ instructions to floss daily. When you floss correctly, it freshens your mouth, prevents disease, and stimulates your gums. Here are five benefits, tips, and facts about flossing to help you develop better oral hygiene habits.

1. Flossing Cleans 40% of Your Teeth

Teeth have five surfaces that need to be cleaned at least once a day. Brushing your teeth cleans the front, back, and chewing surface of your teeth but fails to clean both sides. Flossing is necessary to clean the

final 40% of your teeth.

Flossing removes plaque, a sticky film that coats teeth and contains bacteria. Brushing and flossing ensure that 100% of your mouth is free of plaque.

2. Flossing Prevents Bad Breath

Flossing has physical and mental health benefits. The byproducts produced by bacteria that live in plaque are responsible for bad breath, and flossing is crucial to remove plaque. Bad breath causes social anxiety and low self-esteem. Take back your confidence by flossing.

3. Bleeding is Okay At First

Your gums are likely going to bleed when you first start flossing or if you floss inconsistently. It is not a sign that you need to stop flossing. In fact, it signifies that your gums need to be stimulated more often.

Flossing stimulates gums which increases their blood flow. This is beneficial for gum’s immune response and toxin removal. While flossing initially causes bleeding, the gums will toughen after 3-10 days of consistent flossing.

If bleeding continues for more than two weeks, you may be experiencing a symptom of gum disease. Gum disease is also linked with heart disease so visit a dentist if you have any symptoms of gingivitis and periodontal disease.

4. Less is Not More When Flossing

Get the most out of your flossing by using at least 18-20 inches (a little less than the length of your forearm) each time you floss. This length allows you to floss without the string slipping.

Wrap the floss around each middle finger until about one inch of floss is between your fingers. If you can’t master the correct technique, try a floss threader that secures the string for you.

5. Flossing Feels Like a Massage for Your Gums

Remembering to floss every day can be a challenge for many people. However, there are several easy ways to help remind yourself to floss.

Keep your packet of floss next to your toothbrush as a visual reminder. Set an alarm on your smartphone to remind you when to floss or leave yourself a note taped to your bathroom mirror.

As time passes, you will find yourself wanting the sensation of flossing. The gum stimulation feels similar to a massage for your mouth. Flossing your teeth stimulates your gums to promote better blood circulation. This floods the area with nutrients to support teeth and gum health for a beautiful smile.

The benefits of flossing range from increased self-esteem to gum and heart health. Use plenty of string each time you floss.

Learn more about oral health and dentistry at Aurora Dental Group. We can help you find the right flossing techniques and provide preventative care and dental education to help you develop healthy dental habits to protect your teeth and gums.