Maintaining oral health involves complying with the cleaning guidelines indicated by specialists. Therefore, it is very important to know the correct use of dental floss as one of the pillars of these recommendations.
Types of dental floss
Flossing, also known as dental floss, is an element for oral cleaning that was born in 1815 in New Orleans, United States. In this city, a dentist recommended that his patients clean their teeth with floss. With the passage of time this instrument was perfected, its use was consolidated after the Second World War. Its function is to eliminate food debris between the teeth to prevent the appearance of bacterial plaque. At present, the dental floss is made up of a group of plastic or nylon filaments joined in a cylindrical shape forming a resistant material. The idea is to reach places that the toothbrush does not.
In the market there are many brands that offer this product. Several types of dental floss are distinguished:
- With or without wax: It is the one that is commonly used. It has a flat surface and is indicated for people with normal interdental spaces. Some contain fluoride. Those with wax and are more resistant slide better.
- Super-floss: It is made specifically for those who have fixed bridges, dentures and orthodontic appliances, among others. Therefore, it has more rigid and other spongy sections. Although depending on the needs can be used by anyone.
- Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE): It is made of a material that glides easily like nylon and is less prone to fraying than normal thread.
- Dental tape: It is found with or without wax. It is designed with a flat surface ideal for those with larger interdental spaces.
It is recommended not to buy those that have perfluoroalkylated substances (PFAS) that are carcinogenic.
Correct use of dental floss
Dentists recommend daily use. But you should know how to floss correctly . First, it takes approximately 45 centimeters of thread. This is called the coil method. Roll it in the middle fingers leaving 3 or 6 centimeters to insert it into the gums. Hold it between your thumbs and indexes and gently slide it from top to bottom between your teeth. Then bend the thread at the base of the tooth, so that it passes under the gum As you progress use clean sections of the thread between tooth and tooth. To remove it, move it from back to front by pushing it up so that it comes out of the tooth.
You should not make sudden movements when using dental floss because it could cause cuts or breakage. Avoid putting it with a single pull because the gums can be injured and bleed. Surround the C-shaped tooth to remove plaque debris. The important thing is to cover all the teeth. Another technique for flossing is the loop. This is wrapped tightly in four fingers, tied with two knots forming a loop. Then the loop is held with the four fingers of one hand and the thumb of the other. Thus it is introduced in a controlled way, without applying force that can damage the gum. If you have an orthodontic appliance, pass the thread through the arch before cleaning the interdental spaces. When finished remove the food and bacterial plaque remains by rinsing your mouth. It is possible to complement the cleaning with mouthwash with fluoride.