Every dentist would agree: flossing is one of the most important things you can do for a healthy smile. But if you’re like most, you think you’re already up to speed on how to care for your smile. However, many women fall short in this important plaque-fighting practice dentists say, and if you are not properly educated on the facts and fiction regarding flossing, you aren’t flossing well. Here are telltale signs that you’re getting an F in flossing:
Your gums bleed when you floss
It’s the lack of flossing that causes bleeding. “If your gums bleed when you floss, it means that you have a form of gingivitis. It will clear up if you floss and brush properly,” says New York cosmetic dentist Irwin Smigel, DDS. See flossing 101 to make sure you are flossing right.
You floss less than once a day
“Regardless of whether you floss in the morning, midday or evening, bacteria multiplies every 20 minutes,” so flossing everyday is extremely important says Rutherford, NJ, cosmetic dentist Lee Frost, DDS. As for what time of day is best to do it? “Flossing before bed won’t leave you better off than if you floss in the morning when you wake up,” says Dr. Frost. “What matters most is that you do it once a day.”
You skip flossing because you think it takes too long
“Flossing should only take you 60 seconds at most-30 for your upper teeth and for your lower,” says Dr. Frost. But, if you’re short on time, try flossing your upper teeth in the morning and your lower teeth in the evening, or vice versa.
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