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Importance of Proper Brushing and Flossing

Woman brushing her teethYour mouth is incredibly important. It performs many essential functions every day. It allows you to eat all of your favorite foods, speak effectively, and smile confidently. For your mouth to function properly, it is essential that you take good care of it. A major part of maintaining your oral health is by brushing and flossing. It is not just important to brush and floss though; it is important to perform these habits properly. Long Island Smile can help.

Effects of Poor Brushing and Flossing

The American Dental Association, or ADA, has recommendations for brushing and flossing. They recommend brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day. Following these guidelines is essential for keeping your mouth healthy. Neglecting your oral care routine, even occasionally, can significantly increase your risk of developing serious oral health issues. Effects of poor brushing and flossing habits include:
bullet list graphic Cavities. Cavities are small pits that form on the surfaces of your teeth. They are the result of decay, which is caused by the acids produced by plaque and bacteria that accumulate on your teeth.
bullet list graphic Gum disease. Gum disease occurs when plaque and bacteria irritate your gum tissues. The tissue then becomes inflamed. Without treatment, gum disease can have serious effects on not just your gums, but your jawbone, your teeth, and your whole-body health.
bullet list graphic A poor smile. When gum disease develops, your gums become red and swollen. As the disease progresses, your gums begin to recede. This can significantly impact the quality of your smile.
bullet list graphic Bad breath. When you neglect to clean your teeth properly, foul odors may develop.

Brushing and flossing help to keep your teeth and your gums healthy, preventing these issues from developing.

How to Brush

The ADA recommends brushing at least twice a day for two full minutes each time. It is recommended that you use a soft-bristled toothbrush and a fluoridated toothpaste. You can choose a manual toothbrush or an electric one. Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gums. Move your brush gently back and forth against the surfaces of your teeth. Make sure that you brush all surfaces of your teeth, including the fronts, backs, and the chewing surfaces. Avoid brushing too hard, as even soft bristles can irritate gum tissue and erode tooth enamel if too much force is applied.

How to Floss

It is also important to floss at least once a day. If you are using traditional floss, take about 18 inches and wind it around your middle fingers until you have about one to two inches left between them. Carefully move the floss back and forth to work it between your teeth. Curve the floss around the side of the tooth and gently scrape up and down. Do this for each space, cleaning the sides of each tooth. Use a new section of floss for each space. Do not forget to floss behind your very back teeth, a location that is often neglected. Flossing helps to remove plaque, bacteria, and other debris from between your teeth, where your toothbrush cannot reach. If you cannot use traditional floss, you can use floss picks instead.

Brushing and flossing every day are essential habits for keeping your mouth happy and healthy. Even if you brush and floss properly every day, it is also important to remember to schedule regular dental appointments for cleanings and exams. If you have any questions, contact Long Island Smile at (516) 243-7473 today to learn more.
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Importance of Proper Brushing and Flossing | Dentist Long Island | Long Island Smiles
Brushing and flossing every day are essential habits for keeping your mouth happy and healthy, along with regular dental appointments for cleanings and exams. Call to schedule an exam today!
Long Island Smile, 101 Hillside Avenue, Suite A, Williston Park, NY 11596 | (516) 243-7473 | | 11/6/2023 | Related Terms: dentist Williston Park NY |