Medbroadcast  Powered by MediResource
 Search

Go
 Browse alphabetically
ABCDEFGHIJKLMN
OPQRSTUVWXYZ
HEALTH TOPICS
Family & Child Health
Men's Health
Women's Health
Seniors' Health
Addiction
Allergy
Ankylosing Spondylitis
Arthritis (Rheumatoid)
Asthma
Atrial Fibrillation
Baby Health
Back Health
Bedwetting
Bladder (Overactive)
Brain Health
Cancer
Childhood Vaccinations
Cholesterol
Crohn's & Colitis
Cold and Flu
COPD NEW!
Cosmetic Procedures
Depression NEW!
Diabetes
Digestive Health
Ear Health
Eating Disorders
Eye Health
Flu (Seasonal)
Fertility
Fitness
Healthy Skin
Heart
High Blood Pressure
HPV
Hyperhidrosis
Incontinence
Infection
Kidney Health
Low Testosterone NEW!
Lung Health
Medications and your Health
Menopause
Mental Health
Multiple Sclerosis NEW!
Natural and Complementary Therapy
Nutrition
Obesity
Oral Care
Osteoarthritis of the Knee NEW!
Pain
Pregnancy
Psoriasis
Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA)
Seasonal Health
Sexual Health
Sleep Health
Stroke Risk Reduction
Smoking
Weight Management
Workplace Health
Yeast Infection
All health channels

STAY CONNECTED
RESOURCES
Ask an Expert
Clinical Trials
Find a Specialist
Health features
News
Tools


Condition Info Drug Info Tests and Procedures Natural Products Ask an Expert Support Groups Clinical Trials
Home Bookmark Page Send to a Friend Sante Chez Nous Subscribe
Oral Care > Oral care > Proper flossing techniques
Oral Care
Oral care
Oral health problems
Dental Discussion Guide
Can I improve my smile?
Dental implants
Gum: Is it good or bad for you?
Proper brushing techniques
Proper flossing techniques
What your gums can tell you
What your teeth can tell you
Why use a white dental filling?
Your dental visit
Oral Care resources
Health features
Related conditions
Natural products
Quiz yourself
Health tools



Proper flossing techniques

Why floss?

Flossing is important because proper flossing helps remove plaque and food particles from those spaces between the teeth where a toothbrush can't reach. So if all you do is brush, you're missing an opportunity to promote not only healthy teeth, but also healthy gums. Research shows that regular flossing can reduce the risk of developing gum disease.

What tools do I need for proper flossing?

While knowing how to select a proper toothbrush is important, there is no special trick to selecting the right type of floss. Most products will work just fine.

What is the proper way to floss my teeth?

Although flossing can be intimidating at first, learning and practicing the proper technique will help you to become more comfortable and efficient. Try following these simple steps in front of a mirror, or ask your dental professional to show you how to floss at your next dental checkup.

  1. Wind about 18 inches of floss around the middle fingers of each hand, leaving about five inches between your hands.
  2. Pinch the floss between your thumb and index finger on each hand and leave about one inch in between.
  3. Gently guide the floss down between all the teeth using a gentle sawing motion, pulling the floss in a "C shape" around the entire side of the tooth and sliding it under the gum line. Use an up and down motion to clean the entire surface of the side of the tooth.
  4. Pull the floss out from in between the teeth. As you move to the next tooth, unroll clean floss from one finger and wind the extra floss onto the other finger. Floss each tooth with a clean section of floss, gradually working your way around your mouth, cleaning both sides of each tooth.

Flossing tips

  • Use a pattern - start at the back upper right tooth and move to the upper left side. Then go to the back lower right tooth and move around to the back lower left side.
  • Establish a routine.
  • Practice and improve your technique.
  • Avoid wrapping the floss too tightly around your fingers.
  • Remember to rinse your mouth thoroughly after flossing to remove loosened food particles.
  • If the floss catches or tears you might want to try a different type/brand of floss (e.g., waxed vs. unwaxed).
  • If your teeth are too tight to floss, talk to your dentist about it.
  • If you are just beginning to floss, your gums will likely bleed. Once your start to floss regularly the bleeding should stop. If the bleeding continues, see your dentist.


Advertisement

Did you find what you were looking for on our website? Please let us know.

Hot Topics - Bedwetting, Depression, Flu (Seasonal), Healthy Skin, Incontinence, Multiple Sclerosis, Psoriasis, Stroke Risk Reduction

Condition and disease information is written and reviewed by the MedBroadcast Clinical Team.


The contents of this site are for informational purposes only and are meant to be discussed with your physician or other qualified health care professional before being acted on. Never disregard any advice given to you by your doctor or other qualified health care professional. Always seek the advice of a physician or other licensed health care professional regarding any questions you have about your medical condition(s) and treatment(s). This site is not a substitute for medical advice.
© 1996 - 2014 MediResource Inc. - MediResource reaches millions of Canadians each year.